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Embedded BI Importance Reflects Information Democracy Trend

Although in our 2019 survey respondents give a lower ranked weighted mean importance as well as lower critical and very important ratings to embedded business intelligence (BI) than they did in 2018, user-perceived importance of embedded BI remains on a long-term uptrend and retains a very high level among user organizations.

The reason for this is simple: Organizations increasingly see embedded BI capabilities as a preferred means by which to enable information democracy through expanded internal user access to BI. Information democracy ensures every individual has timely, relevant, and actionable insights to successfully carry out the tasks associated with his or her role.

Well-implemented embedded BI capabilities support and promote information democracy. These include enabling more self-service BI, improving report and analysis access, broadening BI access to internal users, and providing in-context insights and analysis in internal applications. Such capabilities make it easier for more users to have greater access to insights exactly when they need them.

The perceived importance of embedded BI by both user and vendors, and current and planned use of embedded BI, aligns fairly well. This indicates a strong, stable market absent of both excessive hype from vendors, and pent-up, unfulfilled demand by users.

Looking at user perceptions by function and industry shows a wide variety of perceived importance, while the largest organizations report the highest perceptions of importance attached to embedded BI.

Executive Summary

1. Current and planned use of embedded BI aligns fairly well to user perceptions: 64 percent of user organizations indicate embedded BI as critical or very important, and 76 percent of respondents indicate embedded BI use (current or planned in 12 months).

2. When extending perceptions to include 24-month planned usage, 89 percent of user respondents indicate embedded BI use (current or planned) within that time frame, which aligns almost exactly to vendor interest (90 percent of which indicate they consider embedded BI as critical or very important to their strategies).

3. Respondents in business operations, strategic planning, and R&D functions rate embedded BI of highest importance. This change from 2018 may signal a shift to additional opportunities to apply embedded BI to more day-to-day activities.

4. Healthcare and financial services organizations noticeably report the highest perceptions of embedded BI as both critical and very important, followed by a second tier of interest among those in technology and business services. At the other end of the spectrum, consumer services and manufacturing organizations report the least interest in embedded BI.

5. The largest-sized organizations report noticeably higher perceived importance of embedded BI (75 percent) compared to smaller-sized organizations. Perceptions by those in all other size organization sizes is fairly close. Respondents in 63 percent of small organizations (1-100 employees), 57 percent of mid-size organizations (101-1,000 employees), and 61 percent of large organizations (1,001-10,000 employees) report embedded BI as critical or very important to them.

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