Business Analytics comprises the skills, technologies, applications, and practices needed for continuous exploration and analysis of an organization's performance data to get business insight and optimize the planning process. Business analytics utilizes business data, statistical and quantitative analysis, explanatory and predictive modeling, and fact-based management to drive decision making. Market analysts often differentiate between Business Analytics and Business Intelligence (BI) by relating technologies and activities such as OLAP, querying, reporting, and alert tools to BI. According to the market analysts, BI can answer questions like what happened, how many, how often, where the problem is, and what actions are needed. Business Analytics answers questions like why is this happening, what if certain trends continue, what will happen next (predictive analytics), and how can we optimize the situation.
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