Business Intelligence converts data to information in a timely manor.
BI Guy: Okay boss, here's the summary report for last night's baseball game. We ended up with 7 runs, the opponent had 5 runs.
Boss: Okay, this looks good. Do we also have a Details Report of runs per inning?
BI Guy: Sure thing boss. Here's the detailed version of the report. You can see the runs per inning.
Boss: Okay, this looks good. Yet the numbers are ice cold. They don't convey much other than runs per inning. How did the runs score? By whom? Were there an errors? During what inning? Any home runs? How many triples? Did the defense have any double plays? Were there any injuries?
BI Guy: Hold on boss, that will take some time to go find the data sources, massage the data into proper formats and then translate the business rules into a report. See you in about 6 months.
And that's how the typical BI Guy/Girl services Management. We report on the past with cold stale data.
All this is changing however. Take Statistics in Baseball, based on the movie Moneyball.
Where one team with a very low financial budget was forced to compete with teams with higher budgets. In order to compete, they studied and analyzed all of Baseball, to find players with the most value. In other words, players whos skills were overlooked because of some character flaw.
This baseball team acquired great players for low wages and amassed a great team for low dollar amount. And they produced a winning ball club.
Take this model and apply it to Business or Wall Street. How do people find valued assets for low costs. How can you identify trends based on past behavior? Which products are undervalued?
And that is how analyzing metrics found it's way into Baseball and changed the game forever.
This is just the tip of the iceberg.