At Xpand IT, we believe that business intelligence goes way beyond reports and dashboards. We are expert providers of BI solutions, developing projects with the ever-present goal of adding value to any business. Many companies have already placed their bets on data analysis software, recognising the huge potential that such insights represent to progress. However, there is still a small percentage of companies unable to recognise the proper value of internal data analyses and which, therefore, choose not to provide them to their clients. And so, we’ve picked 5 great business intelligence books for you to read, to help you discover more about adopting a complete BI strategy suited to your own situation. In this digital era, we’ve chosen physical formats to help you understand modern BI strategies that you can implement, going way beyond the standard pattern.
As stated by John Owen: “Data is what you need to do analytics. Information is what you need to do business.”
1. Business Intelligence Guidebook: From Data Integration to Analytics
1st Edition, November 2014
This is one of the more comprehensive books about business intelligence and data integration, touching on simple topics as well as vastly more complex architecture. The author guarantees that after reading this book you will be able to develop a BI project, launch it, manage it, and deliver it on time and to a budget. You will also be able to implement a complete strategy for your company – supported by the tools he introduces.
If you’re looking for a reliable source of information, capable of explaining the best practices, the best approaches, and presenting a complete overview of the entire life cycle of a BI project, adaptable for companies of any size, don’t look any further: this is the right book for you.
2. Data Strategy: How to Profit from a World of Big Data, Analytics and the Internet of Things
Bernard Marr – 1st Edition, April 2017
The author starts from the premise that less than 0.5% of all generated data is currently being analysed and used, building a compelling narrative to convince company leaders to invest in business intelligence strategies, focusing on the benefits for business growth.
Complemented with case studies and real examples, this book explains how to translate the data generated by companies into insights to support the strategic decision-making process. This aims to improve companies’ business practices and performance, with a vital combination of Big Data, Analytics and Internet of Things.
3. Agile Data Warehouse Design: Collaborative Dimensional Modeling, from Whiteboard to Star Schema
Lawrence Corr and Jim Stagnitto – 1st Edition, November 2011
This is a book for professionals looking to implement data warehousing and business intelligence requirements, turning them into dimensional models, with the help of BEAM (Business Event Analysis & Modeling) – an agile methodology for dimensional models that aims to improve communication between data warehouse designers, BI stakeholders and their development teams.
If you want to implement this methodology in your company or if you’re just curious about this approach, we strongly recommend you to explore this book, which includes, amongst other topics, subjects such as data modelling, visual modelling and data stories, using the 7 Ws (who, what, when, how many, why and how).
4. Successful Business Intelligence: Unlock the Value of BI & Big Data
Cindi Howson – 2nd Edition, November 2013
This is not the most recent edition, but the wealth of information it contains still makes it one of the best must-have business intelligence books you can read. The author, Research Vice President at Gartner and BI analyst, has conducted a study with the objective of identifying analytics strategies implemented by some of the biggest players in the market.
This book provides much more than just theory. It is a valuable manual that tells stories and lays out successful BI approaches, explaining why the strategies implemented cannot be the same for every company. Additionally, the book includes tips on how to achieve an adequate alignment between a company’s BI strategy and its commercial objectives.
5. Business Intelligence – Da Informação ao Conhecimento
Maribel Yasmina Santos and Isabel Ramos – 3rd Edition, September 2017
This is the only Portuguese book on our list, and it’s very comprehensive, explaining the basic concepts of data analysis and demonstrating how BI technologies can be implemented – from the data warehouse storage process to the analysis of the data (online analytical processing and data mining), outlining how the resulting knowledge can be used by companies to support decision-making.
An essential book, whether you’re a professional searching for a complementary source of information or you’re simply looking for reasons to implement a business intelligence strategy in your company
If you would like to know more about some of the topics mentioned above, or if you want to implement your own BI strategy, get in touch with us today!