Augmented Analytics: Extending the Value of Data

By Predrag Mincic | @intelia | November 5

This article explains the concept of augmented analytics: what it is, why it is important and why every business that aspires to be data driven should be thinking about it.

Businesses are already adopting the use of dashboards, coupled with data and analytics platforms, to generate insights and analysis that assist key business decision-making processes. Over time we expect to see modern analytics & business intelligence (BI) platforms move towards making use of augmented analytics – aimed at empowering more people in organisations to access dynamic data analytics for cutting-edge insights.

According to Gartner, augmented analytics is becoming a dominant factor in new purchase decision-making for analytics, business intelligence and data science platforms.

What is at the core of business intelligence?

An exponentially vast amount of data is generated every day. Business intelligence is the process of turning this data into meaningful insights that can then be used to help organisations make better, data driven decisions that ultimately add more value to the business.

Traditionally, BI specialists develop predefined dashboards for various business teams (data consumers) so they can track their key metrics and explore key drivers.

However, the key challenge for business users has always been a lack of flexibility to understand the data that goes beyond the predefined dashboard. This is where augmented analytics comes in, it bridges the gap between data and insights, it reimagines how business users interact with data.

What is augmented analytics?

Augmented analytics uses Natural Language Programming (NLP) and Machine Learning (ML) to find, visualise and narrate important findings in data that are relevant to users without requiring them to build models or write algorithms.

Business users get data insights by simply asking questions, either written or voice activated, in the same way they might use Google Search or Google Home (or Amazon Alexa).

An example would be to activate voice control and ask, “show me the sales figures over the last two years” followed by “I would also like to see the breakdown by region”. The BI platform would then display the relevant chart(s) and generate narratives to explain drivers. Furthermore, the platform also provides suggestions of related questions that you may be interested to know (and maybe have not even have thought of).

These insights can be then shared more broadly with others across the organisation, therefore used to ignite important discussions leading to more informed business decisions faster.

Why is augmented analytics important?

Augmented analytics removes barriers between non-technical business users and the vast amount of data collected by organisations. Simply, data could be queried, and insights drawn by anyone from the CEO to frontline staff and anyone in between.

Having easier access to data enables organisations to be more agile and more data driven. There is a strong link between being data driven and business performance. According to Deloitte1, 48% of organisations that are more data driven significantly exceed business goals as opposed to 22% of organisations that are less data driven. Being data driven simply means depending on analytics to manage performance and making strategic as well as operational decisions based on thorough data analysis rather than intuition.

For the organisations that strive to become more data driven and compete on analytics, augmented analytics will be key to:
– arming all members of the business with data driven insights to directly impact the way they conduct their activities
– enabling more people to actively participate in data discovery using search driven analytics via voice or text conversation
– enabling access to automatically generated contextual data visualisations with powerful narratives
– enabling auto discovery of related and relevant data insights without even prompting
– enabling personalisation, based on the user, what they do and what they care about

Major Analytics and BI Platforms leveraging augmented analytics
According to Gartner, Microsoft Power BI, Tableau & Qlik are currently market leaders in the analytics and BI market. Other players include large technology company products such as IBM Cognos, SAP Analytics Cloud, Salesforce Einstein, SAS Viya and Oracle Analytics Cloud, and also smaller innovative start-ups including ThoughtSpot, Sisense, Yellowfin, Looker (recently acquired by Google) and Domo.


Augmented capabilities automating insights using Natural Language Programming (NLP) and Machine Learning (ML) are becoming key differentiators and seen as the next big wave of disruption in the market of data and analytics They help democratise data and extend data value reach across organisations far beyond that which was previously possible.

As with other new technologies, early adopters of augmented analytics are likely to benefit the most as their organisations become more data driven, which as research shows, is highly correlated with better business performance.

About the Author

Predrag Mincic is a data analytics expert with over 15 years in the data, analytics & technology industry. His experience spans from helping clients and organisations embrace new data & analytics technologies to building analytics, business intelligence (BI) & reporting solutions ground up and leading high performing data analytics teams.

About intelia

intelia is a specialised data, advanced analytics, intelligent automation and cloud technology consultancy. Founded in 2018, intelia has helped many customers to accelerate the opportunities, commercial benefits and competitive advantage that can be unlocked in a data driven world.

Reach out to intelia if you would like to discuss how your organisation can become more data driven.