BI Trends

Dear Santa… The BI Industry Has Been Naughty

By Alvin Wong
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Dear Santa,

I admit that I’ve been naughty.

And I’m sharing my innermost sins with you, not because I expect a gift this year (well, actually I do…), but because I want you to believe that I’ll put real effort into my New Year’s resolutions to improve myself.

People spend billions of dollars on me every year because I promise to make them smarter and make their jobs easier along the way. But I admit user adoption is not quite where it should be. Only 22% of users rely on me when they need me.

And while I like to say that it’s not my fault, and people just don’t know how to work with me, and users need to more training, and they can decide what they want (okay, I’ll stop with my complaints) – here’s the truth: I’m pretty particular, and frankly, just not easy to work with. I really need to work on that.

So I admit that the whole big data thing got out of control. I couldn’t help myself. It was just so cool and sexy, and everybody got really excited about it. But at the end of the day, it just confused the heck out of everyone, and I did not really help myself.

I simply lose focus sometimes. A part of me gets fat and lazy, while another part gets distracted by the cool whiz-bang stuff. So it’s easy to forget about the things that really matter, and that is to focus on the customer.

It’s not enough for people to need me, but I want to be embraced with open arms—I want to be loved. And so I resolve to challenge myself each and every day to exceed expectations. I promise to break down the walls that I’ve put up for myself and share my greatness with the world. I promise to engrain myself in all the ways that people work, so I am not just informing decisions but also transforming action. I promise to educate without the hype and all the confusion.

Santa, these are my promises for the next year. Can I get just a little something under the tree?

The Business Intelligence and Analytics Industry


Originally published December 24, 2014; updated on August 11th, 2017

About the Author

Alvin Wong has an extensive background in solution architecture and implementation of SaaS and business intelligence applications. Alvin earned his MS in Engineering Management from Stanford University and BS in Electrical Engineering from Cornell University.