I recently had a great discussion with Mark Rittman for his Drill to Detail podcast series about “the business and strategy of analytics and big data.”

In this episode, we discussed:

  • My background and start in analytics, role(s) at BusinessObjects and SAP.
  • The origins of self-service BI for business users with Business Objects’ innovative “Universe” and the role analytics now plays within SAP (still the #1 in market share after 26 years!).
  • Why there’s less emphasis on requiring a “semantic layers” for modern BI, and the expanding definition of “self-service”
  • Why SAP acquired BusinessObjects.
  • The power of analytics cartoons!
  • Why analytics is the most important function within your organization
  • Why it’s important for traditional analytics teams to stay in touch with the teams implementing “digital transformation”
  • Using design thinking to brainstorm prototypes to test
  • Don’t be a BI-nosaur!
  • Companies don’t just need new innovations, they need new ways of innovating — and data helps.
  • How operations and analytics have come together thanks to new technology.
  • Why the vast majority of analytics is still interactive reporting and dashboards (and why that’s not so bad!).
  • The fundamental cyclical trend towards analytics automation.
  • Self-service is great — but 90% of the effort is still getting the data together (but maybe AI can help?)
  • Changing BI competency centers (it’s about doing less)
  • The current SAP range of analytic products
  • The role AI and other innovations will play in analytics going in the future.

You can download the podcast here. Many thanks again to Mark, and don’t forget to check out all the other episodes with key figures in the analytics industry!

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