Business Intelligence vital to employer decision making

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Business intelligence (BI) is growing in importance as a vital decision making tool, yet one in three employers are struggling to find qualified BI professionals to drive innovation and growth within their company. 

The Robert Walters 2018 Business Intelligence Market Guide is taken from a survey of senior BI professionals across the UK, highlighting industry trends, current BI priorities, the BI recruitment market and predictions for 2018.

Download your copy of the full market guide here

Key Findings

  • 75% of professionals use Microsoft as their primary BI vendor
  • Almost half of technology professionals will use BI for operational analytics and to present visualisation tools to the business to help strategic decision making
  • 8 in 10 professionals plan to use BI for dashboard reporting
  • Self-service and personal BI use is on the rise in 2018. 

Most popular BI vendors

Microsoft continues to be the standout BI vendor used by organisations.

75% of those surveyed named Microsoft as their primary vendor, compared to 52% in 2017. SAP Business Objects, SAS, IBM and Oracle were the next most used vendors. 

Top BI priorities

For the third year, reporting and analysis continues to be a main BI priority.

BI managers are increasingly utilising BI for performance management (12%) and predictive analysis (13%) to promote business growth. The number of senior professionals using BI tools for data integration will stay the same in 2018, while those focusing on big data will decrease. A lack of quality candidates was the biggest challenge for hiring managers who have recruited in the last 12 months, a trend expected to continue.

Cloud BI not a popular option

The majority of professionals said they use BI tools on the premises of their jobs (54%) as compared to cloud-based BI tools (20%) or a hybrid of the two (26%).

Skills in demand

Many senior professionals and hiring managers expect to see an increase in workload in 2018.

The largest expected workload increases will be in BI and development (34%), data science (19%) and GDPR compliance (13%). Big data and cloud computing professionals are also expected to see spikes in workload.

Despite the increase in workload, many managers are continuing to struggle to find skilled experienced professionals to combat this workload. A lack of quality candidates was the biggest challenge for hiring managers who have recruited in the last 12 months, a trend expected to continue.


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