Academic journal article Informatica Economica

Comparative Analysis of the Main Business Intelligence Solutions

Academic journal article Informatica Economica

Comparative Analysis of the Main Business Intelligence Solutions

Article excerpt

Nowadays, Business Intelligence solutions are the main tools for analyzing and monitoring the company 's performance at any organizational level. This paper presents a comparative analysis of the most powerful Business Intelligence solutions using a set of technical features such as infrastructure of the platform, development facilities, complex analysis tools, interactive dashboards and scorecards, mobile integration and complex implementation of performance management methodologies.

Keywords: Performance Management, Business Intelligence, Mobile Integration, OLAP, Scorecard

1 Introduction

Performance management is a relatively new concept, but "the word performance is widely used in all fields of management. In the management control area, terms such as performance measurement (Euske, Lebas and McNair, 1993), evaluation, or appraisal (e.g. Bruns, 1992) is used. Despite the frequency of use of the word, its precise meaning is rarely explicitly defined by authors even when the main focus of the article or of the book is performance, (e.g. Baird, 1986; Richard, 1989). Often, performance is identified or equated with effectiveness and efficiency (e.g. Neely, Gregory, and Platts, 1995; Corvellec, 1994). A publication of the French Ministry of Industry equated performance with lean production, competitiveness, cost reduction, value and job creation, growth, and long-term survival of enterprises. In short, performance is one of those "suitcase words" (Bourguignon, 1995) in which everyone places the concepts that suit them, letting the context take care of the definition" [1], Performance can be expressed as a set of complementary indicators that describes the process by which certain results are achieved. Also performance can be defined as a dynamic causal model that describes how certain actions affect future results. Performance is closely related to decision making because performance has no intrinsic value, it exists only when an individual or more use it to make decisions. If the description of performance has no impact on a system or organization then the performance has no value. Also, the description of performance is relative to the perspective from which analyzes, it can be a accounting, operational or strategic perspective.

Performance management includes activities that ensure the fulfillment of targets in an efficient and effective way. These activities are focused on achieving performance of an organization, a department, employees or even some manufacturing processes of a product or a service. Another definition of performance management extracted from a dictionary of management considers that performance is "a process by which organizations align their resources, systems and employees to strategic objectives and priorities."[2] This approach is typical for strategy-based management.

2 Performance Management

The goal of performance management is to ensure the fulfillment of the objectives set by the organization whether they are at strategic, operational or individual level. In order to achieve this goal must be followed a basic set of steps which are valid regardless of the implementation level: organization, subsystems, processes and so on. Some of these activities includes: [3]

a. reviewing organizational goals and their correlation with performance units;

b. elaborate the desired results;

c. ensure the existence of correlation between the results on a certain domain and the results of the organization;

d. prioritize the domain's desired results;

e. finding a first level of evaluating the results and identifying the achieved level;

f. identifying more specific measures for the first level of evaluation, if it is necessary;

g. define standards for evaluating the results;

h. create a performance plan that includes the expectations, measures and standards;

i. create a performance review.

The instruments of performance management need to be used by an organization, department, team or person in a way that the performance achieved to be developed and improved. …

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