New must-have:
What is Analytics Catalogue?

Kseniia Armashula
Head of Marketing at Accton
A few years ago the problem of an uncontrolled analytics environment was finally recognised, raising the need for new BI technology. That's how Analytics Catalogue - a common roof for all enterprise analytics - emerged on the market. Today, just 2-3 years after its appearance, it is said to become a must-have for every data-driven company. A great reason to celebrate, isn't it?
No big news - we've entered a digital era. Meaning businesses now have access to more data and analytics than ever before. Now data is generated for absolutely everyone, and - paradoxically enough - it can be awfully distracting. The classic "data to information to insight" formula doesn't sound so easy anymore. Even organisations doing their best to extract value from their analytics are suffocating under the sheer weight of information load.

Having discussed the issue with various companies worldwide, we discovered that many have struggled with unorganised information for years. So it's not surprising that some of them have put much effort into building in-house solutions to cope with ever-growing amounts of information. Are they ideal? Not at all. Can every organisation build such tools on their own? Certainly not.

Naturally, companies began to look for some ready-made or independently made solutions. A tool had to appear...

... and it did appear - a variety of something similar to the modern analytics catalogue began to gain a wild population. After all, you quickly get used to good things.

Just as nothing appears out of nowhere, the birth of Analytics Catalogues was predetermined by current BI trends. We see at least three main tendencies that are continuously raising the demand for this kind of tool:

1. The growing number of BI platforms.
We are long past the era when CTO defined the corporate tech stack for the whole company. Now every department is free to pick any BI tool that would suit them best from the chock-full market. Being great adepts of this approach, we must accept - independence causes chaos. Forrester says 61% of organisations use 4+ BI tools indicating that multiple business intelligence platforms are here to stay. Decentralisation is progressing; thus, the need for a single place to access all these analytics is becoming even more critical.
2. Everyone wants to be data-driven.
No wonder - research shows powerful benefits for companies who have achieved success in their data-driven journey. Executives say: data-driven decisions raise operational efficiency (40%), improve the ability to meet customer expectations (35%), and drive more revenue (56%). Digitally mature companies are 23% more profitable than their less mature counterparts. Tempting stats!
3. The new way of working.
The pandemic has wholly changed the workflow for most companies. Remote and hybrid work environments have forced enterprises to rethink their business strategies and technology solutions. The situation requires managers and employees to be able to access important information from anywhere at any time.
However, with multiple BI tools in use, getting required data at a moment's notice is not an easily achievable goal. Especially if your business aims to make decisions based on insights and analytics rather than intuition and experience. These prevailing BI trends have revealed the urgent need for an enterprise solution to access analytics from a single place.

Analytics catalogue, BI portal, reporting catalogue, information touchpoint - it's uniform in many names. But what is it at its core?

A common BI portal — a single place to search, collaborate, create workflows and mash-ups, catalog, and secure objects (metrics, reports, dashboards, data visualisations, etc.) across different enterprise BI platforms.
Just like a one-stop-shop for your analytics. You come in, state your request (or browse) and get the exact information you need - in a matter of 2-3 minutes max instead of hours wasted in a fruitless companywide search. The reports and dashboards are accessible in a single portal - regardless of the underlying BI tool - optimising and simplifying the interaction of users with analytics.

What does life look like without an analytics catalogue? Well, stats show that decision-makers need to address analytics at least once a week. Every time they need it, they have to spend more than 5 hours trying to extract value from analytics, and 99% of them state that most of that time is wasted on looking for information they couldn't easily find in their analytics solution. At the same time, analysts and data workers worldwide spend 44% of their workday on unsuccessful data activities, managing repetitive report requests and reengineering existing reports.

The idea might sound somewhat similar to a long-existing concept of "Data Catalogue". If you had that feeling while reading - cheers! you've got the right impression. While data catalogues are created to bring transparency and control over data assets for IT / BI teams, analytics catalogues aim to solve similar problems but from the business user perspective - resolve issues related to analytics usage and adoption by providing simple access, easy navigation and interpretation of the information.

With analytics catalogue being a relatively new concept, a humble number of 5-6 vendors on the market are visioning the tool in different ways. Still, all of them aim to address two challenges: (1) save time on making business decisions and (2) save costs on developing and maintaining analytics.

Covering these high-level goals, Accton Insight Hub provides uniquely comprehensive functionality that will soon make it an irreplaceable go-to guy for your business users.

Using analytics is time-consuming, tedious and simply not fun?

We blend powerful features of an enterprise-wide repository of information assets with the client experience of a boutique e-commerce store.

Not sure how the metric is calculated or how "active users" are defined?

Get the answer from a rich business glossary containing definitions for all KPIs, metrics, dimensions and business terms.

Got a question to BI developer or sales expert curating the report?

Powerful collaboration functions and business processes are at your service.

Can't rely on the quality of information you receive?

We are using a one-of-a-kind integration technique that checks, qualifies and enriches the metadata from your reports and dashboards and makes them much more usable for an end-user.
Of course, choosing a new tool to add to your tech stack is always a gamble, especially when it's a brand new idea. The important thing is to compare your business aims and processes with the product's core values and features and see if there's a match.

At Accton, we firmly believe that finding valuable business insights and acting on them is critical to stand out from the competition and ensure sustainable growth. Being a bit more than just a BI portal, we've built an enterprise-wide repository of information assets with the client experience of a boutique e-commerce store. We see our tool as a fun and easy way to raise BI adoption, become data-driven and make informed decisions.

Do we have a match? ;)
If so - book a call with one of our experts, and we'll take you on a 30-min tour of Accton Insight Hub.
NOVEMBER, 25 / 2021
Written by: Kseniia Armashula
Editor: Anna Ovchynnikova
Key Researcher: Ksenia Gudimenko
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