There’s an intelligence problem with Business Intelligence (BI) software. Magical technology analyst house Gartner suggests that, typically, it sees enterprise organisations running an average of 3.8 ABI (Analytics & Business Intelligence) tools… and, plainly, that’s not connected smartness.

This type of software deployment is often referred to as spaghetti code, application- and software-sprawl, shadow IT or just plain old messiness.

From an ERP perspective, this (above) scenario is bad news i.e. users have to sign into multiple portals to access different information channels and end up trying to weave their own form of cohesion, which is costly, cumbersome and clearly error-prone.

Making A Beeline

The software engineering team at Leicester UK, Ontario and Texas headquartered Digital Hive thinks it could have an answer to BI sprawl inside the ERP universe.

This software gives users a personalised experience searching for a particular set of content (security permissions permitted), with little to no training required. 

The information is presented in ‘swimlanes’ or previews and is meant to be easily digestible for workers of any age. Why would that matter in an ERP universe? Because the current millennial and Gen Z workforce are used to a more instant level of digital experience.

A honeycomb of complexity 

This workforce doesn’t need to know the complexity in which this content is acquired; they just need the ‘old’ BI, ERP, analytics and other tools to be run dynamically and with a modern interface. If there is a honeycomb of complexity hidden behind, Digital Hive would suggest that the upper (user) layer can be likened to an easy-squeezy honey dispenser.

We said data analytics too as part of the Digital Hive technology proposition and the company now includes new connectors to Looker, Microsoft OneDrive, SAP Analytics Cloud, Splunk and TIBCO Spotfire. 

“Business people increasingly expect to adopt and use analytics software and other information systems the same way as they do with consumer apps – instantly… and with minimal or zero training or need for IT intervention. That also means that businesses need to think more like Netflix and Spotify, understanding preferences, pushing out relevant content, and encouraging users to share and collaborate with peers,” said Digital Hive CEO Kevin Hurd.

A virtuous circle of data tools

If this level of information tooling is properly architected into existing IT stacks, carefully deployed and well-presented to a user base that finds it attractive, then it has the potential to lead users onward to engagement with other layers of data tooling such as platforms like Microsoft Power BI, ThoughtSpot, Tableau, Qlik, IBM Cognos and others.

ERP ABI sprawl clearly does occur, whether as a result of sloppy IT systems engineering, shadow IT adoption or some other factor. Digital Hive’s rationale for existence comes about because despite vendors’ efforts to convince enterprises to standardise on single applications and platforms, this rarely happens due to M&A consolidation, changing IT leadership, generational preferences and different use case requirements.

The company insists it offers enterprises a pragmatic way to retain their investments in all their business systems while helping users get the most out of them. This latest release goes well beyond shielding users from the underlying complexity; it provides a consumer apps-inspired user experience… and, if if that proves as toothsome as promised, that could potentially taste pretty sweet.