Oracle India senior director Srinivasan Rangaswami on business analytics trends

Srinivasan Rangaswami, senior director, EPM & BI, Oracle India, says businesses are looking for highly customized; easy to deploy solutions and analytics is increasingly becoming part of every application – from ERP to HRM, CRM, customer experience, and supply chain management software.

Cloud based analytics is finding traction as customer concerns around security, compliance and quality of service are better addressed by SaaS providers. Big data on Cloud offer cost benefits and speed of deployment and the model is finding resonance especially among small and medium enterprises. By deploying business intelligence solutions on a cloud based computing architecture, organizations can analyze their data and take informed decisions in a timely and cost effective manner.

Predictive analytics is an area of interest not only among Search and Social networking companies but enterprises across industries, regardless of their size. Firms want to leverage predictive analytics to understand trends, anticipate and respond to customer needs as well as have better collaboration between the firm’s employees and their end consumers.

Appliance-based and in-memory business intelligence platforms are drawing interest because with the advancements in technology, speed is now becoming a commodity. So the focus is on doing more with less – application consolidation, less power, less space, active and batch workloads, etc.

“Mobile Analytics is another interesting area of growth. The wide scale adoption of mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets at workplace is fuelling adoption. It will help executives make decisions on the move,” said Rangaswami.

Social BI is another trend that is finding greater resonance among companies. Enterprises are and will deploy analytic tools to get business intelligence based on social network data. For example, a company selling consumer electronics can use reports and visualizations made using social media BI to understand what consumers are saying about their products. They can use this insight to create a better marketing strategy that appeals to consumer tastes.

On main customers

Oracle India has industry specific solutions for retail sector, financial services, healthcare, health sciences, communication industry, education, manufacturing as well as the public sector.

Indian Overseas Bank

The company has shared two important case studies. Indian Overseas Bank (IOB) has reduced its planning schedule by 45 worker days per year and assessed market risk instantly with Oracle Business Intelligence System.

IOB deployed Oracle Business Intelligence Enterprise Edition and Oracle Essbase to improve risk management and costing models to better allocate resources and minimize operational costs across branches.

The deployment enabled 2,000 staff, including general, regional, and branch managers, to make better decisions about where to place operational resources by analyzing and monitoring information—such as the status of customers accounts, changes to credit limits, loan repayment schedules, and income leakage—from core banking and treasury systems

Oracle allowed the bank to perform real-time analysis and generate financial reports using a single tool rather than deploying multiple applications, which helped lower IT costs and boost staff productivity, resulting in saving $2 million.

The deployment has reduced the time it took to create plans—covering staff distribution; infrastructure, such as new branches and ATMs; and office equipment—by 45 work days (with one work day equivalent to one day’s work by one person) per year as data about the performance of each branch was available immediately, removing the need to manually collate information from regional offices.

Oracle India senior director Srinivasan Rangaswami

“Oracle Business Intelligence significantly reduces the time and cost of analyzing our market risks and assessing the performance of 2,500 branches. It has also helped us cut the time it takes to create business plans by 45 person days per year,” said S Radhakrishnan, general manager, IT, Indian Overseas Bank.

Tata Sky

Tata Sky, one of the enterprise customers of Oracle India, processes 1 million customer requests per day and resolves queries 25 percent faster using Oracle solutions.

Tata Sky implemented Oracle GoldenGate to provide real-time data integration and Oracle Business Intelligence Standard Edition for reporting and analytics. The Oracle solutions enabled Tata Sky’s customer service staff to access, retrieve, and update customer queries and process requests and payments in real time.

Tata Sky can now resolve customer phone queries in less than three minutes on average, compared to four minutes previously; process 1 million requests each day, compared to 100,000 previously; and provide more accurate customer service and assistance over the phone, 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

“We have used Oracle’s world class products from the start to help us become a leader in India’s direct-to-home market and to support our business growth. We can now process 1 million customer requests per day and resolve queries 25 percent faster,” N Ravishanker, CIO of Tata Sky.

Tips to enterprise CIOs

Analytic and BI solutions are typically disconnected from planning systems and transactional applications so metrics viewed in BI reports and dashboards often have little or no relationship to target metrics established in financial plans.

In the same way, the annual targets established in financial plans and budgets often have little or no relationship to operating plans and dynamically changing business conditions. When BI systems, planning systems, and transactional systems are disconnected and facts and assumptions are misaligned, the pitfalls can include cost overruns, an inventory shortage or surplus, unnecessary risks, and delayed responses to issues and opportunities.

Hence the best strategy is to integrate information across multiple functions and channels and use unified technology platforms like Oracle’s Business Intelligence foundation to meet the full spectrum of enterprise requirements for business analytics including reports, dashboards, scorecards, scenario planning, and forecasting models, as well as ad hoc queries and analysis.

It’s also important that business users are able to easily interpret and present the analysis. Oracle is pioneering innovative ways to simplify how users interact and navigate data using powerful, intuitive visualization paradigms.

“The best ways to visualize the data are automatically suggested to users, based on the data and on the nature of their business questions. The user can then render meaningful and compelling charts, graphs, spatial maps, and other forms of visual representation at the speed of thought,” said Rangaswami or Oracle India.

Another aspect is that as data volumes explode, the need for speed becomes more important than ever. In-memory technology can dramatically accelerate analytic performance. Oracle Exalytics In-Memory Machine is the industry’s first engineered system for analytics that combines analytic software, in-memory database software, and hardware that are engineered and optimized to work together to deliver extreme performance. As a result, users can visually navigate and explore information at the speed of thought, without limits on the complexity of their questions or the volume of the underlying data.

Challenges and opportunities

Analytics can help businesses extract valuable insights from a haystack of customer and operational data. It can help them decode the changing consumer predicament and identify operational inefficiencies within the organization. These insights can help create better business strategies that can lead to enhanced productivity, a stronger competitive position and greater innovation – all of which can have a significant impact on the bottom line and help find new avenues for top line growth. Organizations that use analytics get $10.66 for every $1 they spend on analytics.

Rajani Baburajan

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