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Jargon Jungle

Business Intelligence, Performance Management

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It is well recognised that IT, and specifically the area of Business Intelligence Performance Management solutions is full of jargon which can be misleading and misinterpreted. In previous editions of visualmetrics news we have featured Jargon Jungle, defining the terms that visualmetrics use, and believe are most business applicable, and of broadest demand within companies today. Here we feature some of the key terms.

Business Intelligence (BI)

Business Intelligence Software tools from companies such as Cognos and Business Objects which are employed in the overall delivery of CPM based solutions and Analytical Applications.

Business Intelligence KPI Dashboards software

Business Intelligence software and applications for dashboards, executive information systems, and easy-to-use reporting including key performance indicator Housing DashboardBusiness Dashboard, Management DashboardsHR Performance Dashboards and Logistics Dashboard.

Analytical Applications (AAs)

A pre-built application using a Business Intelligence toolset and based upon a domain of data, which allows an organisation to track, monitor and effect business performance through analysis of its metrics.

Corporate Performance Management (CPM)

The process of understanding and effecting the quality of an organisation’s performance, based upon the interplay Business Intelligence, Metrics and Methods (Also known as BPM: Business Performance Management or EPM: Enterprise Performance Management).

Key Performance Indicators (KPI’s)

Business Measures which are quantifiable, including their associated business rules (Also known as Metrics)


The process that an organisation employs to fulfil its operational. When qualified by Key Performance Indicators and reported via a Business Intelligence toolset, the results are used to meet Corporate Performance Management objectives.


A broadly generic word which encapsulates Business IntelligenceAnalytical ApplicationsCorporate Performance Management and Key Performance Indicators.

Data Warehouse

An offline database which retains all of the aggregated and restructured data relating to the delivery of a BPM solution through an Analytical Application.

Data Mart

A single, subject-based offline database which retains all the aggregated and restructured data relating to the delivery of a BPM solution through an Analytical Application.

The Data Pump

The consolidation and restructuring of operational data in a packaged way, that can be interpreted (consumed) by the user.

The Information Supply Chain

A suite of software programs which automates the time based and selective extraction, transformation and loading of relevant data for reporting purposes into the Data Warehouse.

Enterprise Information Integration (EII)

software development project which allows organisations to integrate data from disparate operational and Data Warehouse Databases, to allow the organisation to deliver reports from these disparate data sources.

Balanced Scorecard

A management system that enables organisations to clarify their vision and strategy, and translate them into action. It provides feedback around both the internal business processes and external outcomes in order to continuously improve strategic performance and results. It retains traditional financial measures to assist in creating future value through investment in customers, suppliers, employees, processes, technology and innovation.

Extraction, Transformation and Load (ETL)

A toolset with the ability to create data feeds between operational database systems.

Online Transaction Processing (OLTP)

Detailed transaction reporting against operational systems or Data Warehouses.

Online Analytical Processing (OLAP)

Interrogative and multidimensional summary reporting permitting reporting operations such as drill-down, slice & dice, and changing displays.

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