Affecto Corporate IQ Oslo


I attended the Affecto Corporate IQ 2011 event this morning, in Oslo, Norway, in the Thon Hotel overlooking the spectacular Opera House. The theme of the conference was “Revolution”, and was kicked off by Håvard Ellefsen, the CEO of Affecto in Norway.


Morning Keynote

I gave the opening keynote, on the “Big Leap Forward”.

During the rest of the morning, there were various track sessions on the “BI of the future”:

Gartner Keynote

After lunch, Dan Sommer of Gartner gave a great keynote on “The Information Rush: BI Market Trends and Dynamics”. Here are some of the most interesting points:

Changes in CIO Budgets over the previous year, 1998 to 2010 (worldwide and by %)


BI ranking in priorities for the Nordic countries: #4, after cloud computing, mobile technologies, and virtualization.


Over time, people are moving from “systems of record” to “systems of differentiation” to “systems of innovation” – and you need all three.

There’s a near term shift to “stack buying” – here are the vendor market shares worldwide in 2010, with the four “stack” vendors in red:


And these vendors benefit from the trend towards standardization — 76% of SAP customers it to be their BI standard – higher than Oracle at 75% and IBM at 72%.


Second big trend is the shift towards business-focused buying, and the rise of “data discovery” solutions, and a shift away from reporting, to dashboards, etc.


Third trend – shift towards increased amount of users. “Of the total potential users who could use BI in your organization, a[proximately what percentage is currently using BI?”

  • 2007, 25%
  • 2008, 26%
  • 2010, 27%
  • 2011, 28%
  • Perhaps 50% in 2014?

The most successful BI initiative in organizations was to make more data available to more users:


Summary: by 2014:

  • Megavendors will own 75% of BI platform market share, from two-thirds today.
  • Business units will control at least 40% of the total budget for BI
  • Use of BI/analytics/PM will have doubled.

Beyond 2014: Hype Cycle:


Cloud BI – lots of hype, but a small footprint today.  New social BI provides a step towards “Decision Support 2.0”. Mobile: “By 2013, 33% of BI functionality will be consumed via handheld devices”.

Panel Session

There was a panel session with myself, Dan Sommer, Jonas Lie-Nielsen of the Norwegian Post, Anita Steine  of Canal Digital and  Eldar Sveinung  of Mills.

What’s the single most important issue that should guide your BI investment? Why?

I said something along the lines of “investment in people is the biggest opportunity in BI”. When BI projects fail, it’s because of people, process, and culture – not technology. So are you spending 90% of your time on those issues? Dan mentioned that it was simply imperative to invest in BI to avoid the fate of companies like Blockbuster.

What’s the biggest shift that will change the business?

I cited the new opportunities brought by in-memory, column stores, etc, to provide information more flexibly.

Why do we want CEO attention in BI decisions? Isn’t this a tech matter after all?

My take: pretend you’re the CEO, and you’re the one with the responsibility to do the best thing for the business with the information resources you have. Go interview people on what they’re really doing with information today. You’ll have a much better view of what the business needs, and you’re likely to find (big) opportunities to improve things –which you can then take to the CEO for her support…

Ease of Use vs functionality.

My take: one thing you can do right now is roll out a simplified version of your current environment, to ALL your users. You can never overestimate the sophistication of your business people’s needs. Follow in Apple’s footsteps by saying “no” to new functionality until it’s been widely adopted.

What Can We Learn From Neanderthals?

The final session of the day was a presentation by popular journalist and social-media “superhero” Elin Ørjasæter, called “Can we learn something from Neanderthals?“.  Unfortunately, it was in Norwegian so I couldn’t follow it, but I sensed there was a bit of a disconnect between the message and the audience…

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