What Is SaaS Business Intelligence?

D. Nelson
D. Nelson
Woman holding a disc
Woman holding a disc

Software as a Service (SaaS) is a software model in which users access software online from a web host. Users often pay a subscription fee, and benefit from having a web host perform security and performance upgrades. Business intelligence software is any kind of computer program that enables professionals to record, retrieve, and share information that impacts business decisions. Professionals using SaaS business intelligence, therefore, subscribe to a software service that allows them perform functions such as generating charts that illustrate cost and revenue, tracking customer relations, evaluating suppliers, and managing inventory.

Business intelligence software is effective when it allows users to analyze data from a number of different perspectives. This ability enables users to gain fresh perspectives on data. Likewise, a business intelligence program should help users to organize data in formats that allow them to gain clear readings. Business intelligence can describe information related to a business's interior operations and to exterior factors, such as market trends.

Professionals who use SaaS business intelligence benefit from its ease of access. In many cases, users can access software from their mobile devices. They sometimes find that it can be more cost effective than owned software since it enables them to be less dependent on Information Technology (IT) services.

A professional using SaaS business intelligence to learn about his or her business's budget and profitability might generate charts that show correlations between different groups of customers and costs required to provide products or services for these customers. When a professional needs to cut costs, for example, he or she can use these charts determine which customer groups generate the lowest profit margins. A professional then can choose to scale back on services for these specific groups.

SaaS business intelligence also enables sales professionals to perform customer relationship management. Users might use customer relationship software to view data that reflects customer satisfaction and spending. This intelligence can provide users with insight for how to sell new products to existing customers. It also can help sales professionals to learn which selling points they should use to gain new customers based on demographics such as industry, income, and region.

Inventory management is a common function of SaaS business intelligence. When professionals with inventory management use business intelligence, they learn which items go out of stock quickly and which items they tend to overstock. Inventory managers in charge of different locations might use SaaS business intelligence to track inventory numbers at different facilities and issue orders to move some items from one location to another.

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