As a new-age business, operating in a world full of social media updates and news, there is so much information that comes to you, about your consumers or even potential consumers. All data elements that reach you, whether through formal sources or informal ones, need to be converted into information that you can use, for decision making. Data is forming the biggest part of an organization’s business strategy and future goals right now.


When the data is converted into information, it takes the form of intelligence or analytics. Courses for business analytics talk about these concepts in detail.


Here we will take a brief look at what differences exist between these.

  1. Business Analytics is usually carried out using statistical analysis, to be able to determine why certain trends are showing up or specific things are happening. The analysis is oriented towards finding answers to certain concerns, based on past or present data. Business Intelligence, on the other hand, is related to using the data to understand how it can be used and what decisions can it enable the company to make.
  2. Analytics does help in predicting trends for the future. A lot of the Business Analytics is mainly about predictive modelling and sharing insights on what you might face, and therefore preparation for the same. Intelligence, on the other hand, gives a great depth of information for the data at hand.  So business intelligence is what sets the foundation for the decision making that an organization undertakes. It shifts the focus from intuitive based decisions or judgement based approaches, to actual fact-based decisions.
  3. Business Analytics is mainly related to making changes to the business or its direction. Business intelligence, on the other hand, is focused on sustaining the business. Therefore, if as an organization, you plan to switch gears and move into another direction, the analytics are what will help you to make crucial decisions and validate your approach. If you are planning to build stability in your existing venture, the intelligence is what will help you in choosing how to define steps to do that.

Both these terms have often been used interchangeably. While there are some fundamental similarities between them, there are several differences too. The orientation for Business Intelligence has always been towards reporting the actual analysis that has been undertaken. It is the logical next step after Business Analytics since it shares implications that analyses have uncovered. So knowledge of both these areas is equally important for all business professionals, irrespective of their functional areas.


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