Data preparation is a key component for any analytics and BI initiative. And although important, according to the Wisdom of Crowds Data Preparation report, released February 28, 2019 by Dresner Advisory Services, many organizations still struggle with their data prep. Only 18.51% of survey respondents identify their data preparation approach as highly effective, thereby showing that most organizations (potentially over 80%) have some level of data management challenge, even if small. When looking at analytics and BI specifically, over 40% of respondents with successful BI implementations state their data prep is somewhat ineffective, leading to the fact that BI success may still be limited. This highlights the connection between strong data preparation and visibility into information assets and business intelligence success.
Information Builders has high ratings in data preparation based on the fact that it is a platform and provides support for all aspects of the data and analytics lifecycle from data acquisition through analytical delivery.
At the same time, there seems to be more realization that data management and successful data preparation are essential components for analytics outputs. The days of organizations looking at data and analytics separately are over. This becomes more obvious when we see that Dresner evaluates 24 vendors and their data preparation capabilities. All of these vendors fall within the data management and analytics & BI spaces where data preparation provides a subset of pertinent product capabilities. In essence, data preparation provides the backbone of gaining any value out of information.
Information Builders ranks #3 out of 24 vendors, and comes in first against main competitors. All of the vendors rated provide broader capabilities and many offer analytics solutions. Information Builders has high ratings in data preparation based on the fact that it is a platform and provides support for all aspects of the data and analytics lifecycle from data acquisition through analytical delivery. The importance of this cannot be underestimated. As organizations move towards broader analytics adoption and enhanced scalability, the ability to apply strong data preparation capabilities within their platform and not through a piecemeal approach will lead to quicker delivery times and faster time to value.
Overall, instead of looking at the challenges that data preparation may present, organizations should realize that most, if not all, vendors are dedicated to providing enhanced data preparation capabilities to enable better information visibility. At the same time, evaluating capabilities specific to project requirements and how they may change over time are important to ensure the right choice is made. It is important for companies to include data preparation criteria in their broader software evaluations to ensure they can get quantitative value out of their analytics and business intelligence investments.