Cloud BI: Going where the data lives

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The transfer speed of data could be slow too. That could impact the reliability of the data analytics if users end up making decisions based on old data because the latest data hasn't made it to the cloud BI tool. "This could be a real bottleneck," Bange says. "Upload speeds are often not really good."

One common reason that companies give for passing up cloud BI -- concern over privacy and security, given that BI products tend to analyze a company's most important data -- actually isn't worth worrying about, some experts say. "Most cloud vendors tend to have more strict security processes and follow security certificates that are more advanced than most companies have internally," Tapadinhas says.

Whether a business goes with cloud BI or an on-premises product, Athenahealth's Weinstein offers valuable advice. Once Athenahealth implemented Birst and workers were able to quickly access useful information, they were spotting a lot more issues than they used to. The company had to figure out how to respond to the increased number of problems that it found. "Net net it's a good thing," Weinstein says. "Just be prepared for what the transparency is going to bring."

This article, Cloud BI: Going where the data lives, was originally published at Computerworld.com.

Nancy Gohring is a freelance writer covering cloud computing, mobile phones and wireless networks. Follow her on Twitter ( @ngohring and contact her at ng@ngohring.com.

Read more about business intelligence/analytics in Computerworld's Business Intelligence/Analytics Topic Center.

This story, "Cloud BI: Going where the data lives" was originally published by Computerworld.

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