BI Trends

An Industry in Flux: What Does the Shift to Self-Service Analytics Mean?

By Brian Brinkmann
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When you look back just five years ago, the business intelligence (BI) space looked completely different than it does today. Traditional BI tools primarily used by IT reigned and self-service analytics tools, primarily championed by data discovery, were only beginning to be noticed. The real work of data analysis was left up to just a few power users.

Today, organizations expect all their employees, regardless of role or industry, to use self-service analytics tools on their own to make data-driven decisions. For instance, sales reps want to track their daily activity levels against goals; hospital administrators want to monitor readmission rates against industry standards; and truck drivers want to analyze their fuel efficiency.

This shift towards self-service has even led to quite a major shift in BI market, which culminated when Gartner recently changed its underlying definition of what a BI and analytics platform is in the latest Magic Quadrant for Business Intelligence and Analytics.

It’s clear the BI industry is in flux and vendors must offer tools that are increasingly user-friendly, require fewer technical skills and allow more sophisticated tasks with minimal or no IT support.

Beyond the tools, organizations also need to start considering the analytics experience. In other words, if you give your business people an analytics experience that matches their skills and needs, they will seek out the analytics to do their job.

This shift to self-service is just at the tipping point. I recently wrote about what the shift to self-service analytics means in InsideBigData.

Check out the article, and see if you agree with me on where the market is headed.


Originally published March 25, 2016; updated on August 9th, 2017

About the Author

Brian Brinkmann is the VP of Product Management at Logi Analytics. Brian has over 15 years of analytics and BI software experience. Prior to joining Logi Analytics, he held senior product strategy, management, and marketing positions with MicroStrategy, creating BI applications for marquee customers such as Nike and Franklin Templeton. Brian holds a MBA and a MEM from Northwestern University, as well as a Bachelor of Electrical Engineering from the University of Dayton.