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APRIL 2021: We Asked BI Consultants About Future BI Trends. These Are Their Predictions.

Publication date: 21 April 2021

It was only a few years ago when business intelligence (BI) was introduced for the first time. However, its evolution is proceeding at a frantic pace. After realizing the immense value BI provides, companies are constantly working on advancements. The latest trends in BI show that, in the near future, business will change drastically.

But, what are the current trends in BI? And, how is BI expected to change in the future?

Based on a plethora of conversations with Business Intelligence (BI) Consultants at HICO and those spearheading the BI space, it is predicted that there are going to be numerous advancements in BI in the coming years. And, all of them are coming quickly.

In this article, we rounded up the trends that are set to shape the future of BI, as well as future as a whole.

office photo collaboration notice board

Fully remote industries

– Ralph Ginzinger, VP Consulting

“Corona is driving significant change in all industries. As a consequence, independent consulting is seeing a huge shift in demand due to all the tools and unprecedented changes in the market. We are already getting used to fully remote work. The next step might be to get used to fully remote industries, especially for consulting businesses, as the only physical locations we’re seeing are online and on the screen, which can provide fewer restrictions for teams to expand internationally.”

Digitalized documentation

– Laurence Fuhlmann, Senior BI Consultant

“As for me, I’m hopeful this new trend of remote work will bring even more digitalization, specifically in regards to documentation and printing. I think there is a good possibility that all documents will be replaced by scanned documents in all branches over the next 5-10 years. This would be even a more sustainable solution for the future because there wouldn’t be any need to use paper. It would certainly be a major change in the corporate environment.”

Fully automated workplace

– Michael Schwan, CEO

“One of the biggest trends in the last few years has been machine learning, AI, and creating systems that can outsmart people, and even make decisions completely autonomously. I think right now we are just creating the building blocks for it but I don’t think we are getting something that is fully self-functional in at least another 10-15 years. A fully automated workplace of the future sounds scary and fascinating at the same time. I am interested in knowing how that could impact business intelligence and data collaboration as a whole.”

Data storytelling

– Bastian Lossen, Managing Partner & CCO

“Data storytelling. The novel uncertainty of the future is something that can only be eased by genuine data insights that provide a story about your business’ performance and possibilities. It’s a ripple effect that I can already see how it’s affecting major business decisions. For example, this year we spent only 15% of our planned budget for travel expenses. How will we plan this for next year?”

Collaboration all the way

– Benjamin Gnädig, VP Business Development & Processes

“Collaboration has become the key trend for businesses during the course of this year. Combine that with the right tools and you have a winning formula to maximize business results. Tools like TRUECHART have helped our clients bring their data to life and make it accessible and visually meaningful to everyone on their teams. I wouldn’t say I am “expecting” anything to develop as the next big thing but I am genuinely excited to see what new business tools, processes, and ideas we will get in the near future to improve our ‘new normal’, as teams and individuals.”

Using AI for Planning

– Stefan Spielvogel, Lead Consultant Planning

“Based on what we can see now, AI is a trend that is gaining new ground. I think a lot more smaller trends will derive from that which will drive the adoption of Planning in newer ways. Essentially, there will be even more automation and more possibilities with using an AI model. Less guesswork. More frequent planning. More technologies and integrations. In general, I think the main point is to get as much speed, flexibility, and control as you possibly can with your planning.”

Cloud and Data Estate

– Mischa Kaltz, BI Consultant Data Estate

“Currently, Cloud is a hot topic when it comes to Data Estate, especially now with everyone going remote. If anything, Cloud and Data Estate solution adoption is accelerating nowadays. It can only get even faster and greater in the future, if you ask me. However, I do believe that in the future more focus will be put on keeping the data secure. There needs to be a “right” way to save data to the Cloud, and it could be one of the biggest challenges in the future.”

Self-Service BI

– Florian Mutter, Senior BI Consultant

“I believe Self-Service BI will become the next big change in business. And, there will be so much more automated processes that today take quite a long time. For example, scripting routines that will turn into wizards to click instead of having to code logic. A lot of tasks that BI Consultants/Developers have to do repeatedly could be made easier (automated) in the future, leaving more time for other topics. We can see such trends already in the tools we offer to our customers.”

Higher-than-ever adoption of ‘data’ solutions

– Nicolai Wolf, Senior BI Consultant

“[We’ll see] just more data. Increasingly more data. I think we can see this slowly starting to take shape even now. Many industries and companies are changing their view on the “benefits” of actionable data and insights. In the future, instead of just gathering, and looking at the data, there will be unfathomably more analysis happening to create this new age of organizations that are truly “fueled” by their data and predictive trends.”

AI as the human’s best friend

– Marcus Malden, Senior BI Consultant

“I believe there will be changes in preparation models, and that Artificial Intelligence will become even more popular. I’m also guessing to see some positive development with speech input software. Cortana is already doing major advancements in this regard. Like, you could ask a computer a question and then the computer can preselect data and may also find some creative ways to find answers and certain anomalies – this would be very useful for us all.”

Greater BI solution variety and adoption

– Frank Vogler, Senior BI Consultant

“I believe that there will be even more data-driven management decisions in the future; AI in combination with BI will be much more important than today. There surely will be an even bigger variety of data sources. I think it is already getting in the direction that our customers have or are now building a proper and well-designed Data Storing Solution to gather all the different data types. On-premise or even in the Cloud. We will probably see a future with business processes more and more aligned and everyone within a company will be on track and knows what is going on.”

Data-driven companies will have a significant advantage over their competition in the era of digitization. If you’re interested in making the most out of revolutionary BI tools and digital processes, HICO-Group is the team of experts in your corner. Let’s chat.


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