For some organizations, business intelligence and reporting are used to refer to the same thing. However, business intelligence and reporting vary in the roles they play within an organization.
For example, business intelligence usually answers the question why and reporting answers the question what. Business intelligence usually show you why something happened and the ways by which the business can improve future performance. In contrast, reporting tells you what has happened and what the current status looks like.
BI tool vs Reporting tool
It is worth noting that reports basically use the same format through time so that by simply looking at it, it is easy to figure out what it wants you to know. No need to squeeze your brain trying to figure out what it means every time.
However, it is not uncommon that as your business grows in revenue and complexity, your reporting needs also change over time. You might need to modify or extend or simply create an entirely new report from scratch with new parameters. If your organization constantly goes back to your IT because you need to generate an entirely new report from scratch and it is too complex to handle, you are not alone.
In contrast, BI tools are designed with responsiveness and flexibility in mind. It is important for your organization to be able to combine different sources of data in various ways in order to come up with a valuable business insight. Many BI applications also warrant IT team´s help although there are a few solutions out there now like Performance Canvas Financials that makes handling the BI application easy for non-technical users.
Today, there are many systems that offer a wide array of reports with good flexibility and powerful BI analytics capabilities.
Performance Canvas Financials for example has a built-in reporting and built-in BI capabilities. Performance Canvas Financials is a good proof that many FP&A systems these days now offer interactive, real-time and agile reporting and BI capabilities in one single platform.
From the viewpoint of complete FP&A technologies like Performance Canvas, the differences between reporting and business intelligence tools are now significantly decreased.
To illustrate, Performance Canvas Financials can not only give you the financial reports you need, it can also be used as a BI tool that can provide your organization valuable business insights to support sound decision-making.
Performance Canvas promises business users a complete financial solution that can handle financial reporting & analysis, budgeting & planning, financial consolidation, and BI capabilities such as dashboarding, scorecarding, and KPI management with a considerably shorter time to implement and significantly more affordable pricetag.
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