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What Does a Business Intelligence Specialist Do?

Alex Newth
Alex Newth

A business intelligence specialist is charged with various tasks to help a business collect intelligence and information. Such a specialist must be familiar with — and able to use — business intelligence computer programs to ensure the business is updated with new information. Aside from using these programs, the specialist also will design new programs and improve existing programs to help himself do his job and to help the entire business. Most businesses have a database to archive all their data, and a business intelligence specialist will help database designers so business intelligence can efficiently enter the database. As a specialist, this person is commonly charged with heading projects and may be responsible for managing other business intelligence workers.

Obtaining business intelligence requires the use of many different programs. The business intelligence specialist must have extensive knowledge of how to use these programs to ensure the business gets the most and best intelligence. As a specialist, this person is expected to have more experience and knowledge about the programs than most others on the business intelligence staff, and he should know ways of fixing technical problems or optimizing the program’s features.

Man holding computer
Man holding computer

Not only is a business intelligence specialist expected to expertly use these programs, but he also is expected to build new programs and improve current ones. New programs will typically be able to gather intelligence in new ways or will be targeted to retrieve a specific type of intelligence. To ensure that these programs work, he must test them and ensure they are easy enough to use that others can work them. This person also must improve current programs, such as adding new tools or making it easier for people to use.

To store all the business intelligence, a database is typically used. Database designers will usually consult the business intelligence specialist to ensure the database and business intelligence can work together. If they cannot, then the intelligence may funnel into the database slowly, or the data may have to be added manually, which can take hours.

Unlike other business intelligence workers, a business intelligence specialist is usually required to propose and head new projects to increase the business’s efficiency in terms of intelligence. This can include making strategic goals, building new programs, developing web portals and running analytic projects that observe the end-user’s behavior. The specialist also may be responsible for managing other business intelligence workers, but this depends on the business and is not a common responsibility for this specialist.

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