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How Do I Choose the Best Business Intelligence Portal?

Article Details
  • Written By: D. Nelson
  • Edited By: M. C. Hughes
  • Last Modified Date: 14 November 2016
  • Copyright Protected:
    2003-2016
    Conjecture Corporation
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To choose the best business intelligence portal, you should consider the needs of your organization. For instance, a professional who owns or manages a small business might benefit most from a basic program that allows multiple users to compare figures, graphs, documents, and information related only to an organization's interior operations. Professionals in a large organization, however, might require a business intelligence portal that allows them to access interior information as well as exterior information regarding market behaviors, news, and trade updates. In most cases, the best business intelligence program is one that you can fit into your budget and which will generate the highest returns in terms of efficiency, productivity, and cost effectiveness.

A business intelligence portal is a kind of software that allows multiple users to share, edit, and access information regarding the performance of their organization. In most cases, users work on an interface where they can view and create spreadsheets, graphs, and documents. Some portals also provide users with exterior information from sources such as newspapers, trade publications, and other resources related to a specific industry.

Professionals searching for a business intelligence portal might begin by reading trade publications about business software. These periodicals often provide reviews of programs and informational articles about new developments. They may also include rankings and information about software that is used by successful businesses.

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It is also common for software companies to make samples available to the public. A professional can go to a software company's website and access demonstrations. This can be a good way to study the features offered by a business intelligence portal and to determine factor's such as user friendliness.

Another possible option for testing software is to access open source software. These are programs that are created and upgraded by a number of different programmers and made available to the public, often at no cost to the user. Opponents of open source software believe that much of it contains design flaws. Regardless, you may want to experiment with this software to learn about basic business intelligence functions and decide which are most valuable to you.

Others choose to get recommendations from colleagues who work in similar businesses. You may, for example, ask acquaintances who work in similar fields what their experiences have been using a particular kind of software. If you are not an Information Technology (IT) expert, you can ask an IT consultant questions regarding compatibility with your organization's current software and hardware.

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