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Business Intelligence Interview Questions and Answers


Explain the concepts and capabilities of Business Intelligence.
Business Intelligence helps to manage data by applying different skills, technologies, security and quality risks. This also helps in achieving a better understanding of data. Business intelligence can be considered as the collective information. It helps in making predictions of business operations using gathered data in a warehouse. Business intelligence application helps to tackle sales, financial, production etc business data. It helps in a better decision making and can be also considered as a decision support system.

What is Business Intelligence?
Business Intelligence is a process for increasing the competitive advantage of a business by intelligent use of available data in decision making.
The five key stages of Business Intelligence:
◊ Data Sourcing
◊ Data Analysis
◊ Situation Awareness
◊ Risk Assessment
◊ Decision Support

Name some of the standard Business Intelligence tools in the market.
Business intelligence tools are to report, analyze and present data. Few of the tools available in the market are:

  • Eclipse BIRT Project:- Based on eclipse. Mainly used for web applications and it is open source.
  • Freereporting.com:- It is a free web based reporting tool.
  • JasperSoft:- BI tool used for reporting, ETL etc.
  • Pentaho:- Has data mining, dashboard and workflow capabilities.
  • Openl:- A web application used for OLAP reporting.

What is a Universe in Business Intelligence?
A "universe" is a "Business object" terminology. Business objects also happens to be the name of the company. The universe is the interfacing layer between the client and the datawarehouse . The universe defines the relationship among the various tables in the datawarehouse.
Or
Universe is a semantic layer between the database and the user interface (reports).

What is OLAP in Business Intelligence?
Online Analytical Processing, a category of software tools that provides analysis of data stored in a database. OLAP tools enable users to analyze different dimensions of multidimensional data. For example, it provides time series and trend analysis views. The chief component of OLAP is the OLAP server, which sits between a client and a database management systems (DBMS). The OLAP server understands how data is organized in the database and has special functions analyzing the data.
A good OLAP interface has writes an efficient sql and reads an accurate data from db.To design and architect having good knowledge on DB understanding the report requirements.

What are the various modules in Business Objects product?
◊ Business Objects Reporter
◊ Reporting & Analyzing tool
◊ Designer
◊ Universe creation
◊ database interaction
◊ connectivity

Supervisor - For Administrative purposes
Webintelligence - Access of report data through internet
BroadCast Agent - For scheduling the reports
Data Integrator - The ETL tool of Business Objects, designed to handle huge amounts of data

What is OLAP, MOLAP, ROLAP, DOLAP, HOLAP? Explain with Examples?
OLAP - On-Line Analytical Processing:
Designates a category of applications and technologies that allow the collection, storage, manipulation and reproduction of multidimensional data, with the goal of analysis.

MOLAP - Multidimensional OLAP:
This term designates a cartesian data structure more specifically. In effect, MOLAP contrasts with ROLAP. Inb the former, joins between tables are already suitable, which enhances performances. In the latter, joins are computed during the request.
Targeted at groups of users because it's a shared environment. Data is stored in an exclusive server-based format. It performs more complex analysis of data.

DOLAP - Desktop OLAP:
Small OLAP products for local multidimensional analysis Desktop OLAP. There can be a mini multidimensional database (using Personal Express), or extraction of a datacube (using Business Objects).
Designed for low-end, single, departmental user. Data is stored in cubes on the desktop. It's like having your own spreadsheet. Since the data is local, end users dont have to worry about performance hits against the server.

ROLAP - Relational OLAP:
Designates one or several star schemas stored in relational databases. This technology permits multidimensional analysis with data stored in relational databases.
Used for large departments or groups because it supports large amounts of data and users.

HOLAP - Hybridization of OLAP:
Which can include any of the above.

Why an infocube has maximum of 16 dimensions?
It depends upon the Database limits provided to define the Foreign key constraint, e.g. in Sql Server 2005, the recommended max limit for foreign keys is 253, but you can define more.

What is BAS? What is the function?
The Business Application Support (BAS) functional area at SLAC provides administrative computing services to the Business Services Division and Human Resources Department. We are responsible for software development and maintenance of the PeopleSoft? Applications and consultation to customers with their computer-related tasks.

Name some of the standard Business Intelligence tools in the Market?
Some of the standard Business Intelligence tools in the market According to their performance
◊ MICROSTRATEGY
◊ BUSINESS OBJECTS,CRYSTAL REPORTS
◊ COGNOS REPORT NET
◊ MS-OLAP SERVICES
Or
◊ Seagate Crystal report
◊ SAS
◊ Business objects
◊ Microstrategy
◊ Cognos
◊ Microsoft OLAP
7. Hyperion
8. Microsoft integrated services

How do we enhance the functionality of the reports in BO?
You can format the BO Reports by using various features available. You can turn the table reports into a 2-Dimensional or 3-Dimensional charts. You can apply an Alert to show some data in a different format , based on some business rule. You can also create some prompts, which will asks user to give some input values before seeing the reports, this way they will see only filtered data. There are many similar exciting options available to enhance the reports.

What are dashboards?
A management reporting tool to gauge how well the organization company is performing. It normally uses "traffic-lights" or "smiley faces" to determine the status.

Explain about Auditing in BO XI R2? What is the use of it?
Auditor is used by the business objects administrators to know the complete information of the business intelligence system.
◊ it monitors entire BIsystem at a glance.
◊ Analyzes usage and change impact
◊ optimises the BI deployment

How do we Tune the BO Reports for Performance Improvement?
We can tune the report by using index awareness in universe

Why we ca not create an aggregate on an ODS Object?
◊ Operational Data Store has very low data latency. Data moved to ODS mostly on event based rather than time based ETL to Data Warehouse/Data Mart.
◊ ODS is more closer to OLTP system. We don't normally prefer to store aggregated data in OLTP. So it is with ODS.
◊ Unlike data warehouse where data is HISTORICAL, ODS is near real time(NRT). So data aggregation is less important is ODS as data keeps changing.

What is hierarchy relationship in a dimension.
whether it is:
1. 1:1
2. 1:m
3. m:m

1:M

How to connect GDE to Co Operating system in Abinitio?
We can connect Ab Initio GDE with Co>operating system using Run->Settings.In there u can specify the host IP address and the connection type .Refer Ab Initio help for further details.

Explain the Name of some standard Business Intelligence tools in the market?
Some of the standard Business Intelligence tools in the market According to there performance
1) MICROSTRATEGY
2) BUSINESS OBJECTS,CRYSTAL REPORTS
3) COGNOS REPORT NET
4) MS-OLAP SERVICES

What are the various modules in Business Objects product Suite?
Supervisor: Supervisor is the control center for the administration and security of your entire BusinessObjects deployment.
Designer: Designer is the tool used to create, manage and distribute universe for BusinessObjects and WebIntelligence Users. A universe is a file that containe connection parameters for one or more database middleware and SQL structure called objects that map to actual SQL structure in the database as columns,tables and database.
BusinessObjects Full client Reporting tool: Helps to create businessobjects reports based on the universe and also from the other data sources.
BusinessObjects Thin client Reporting tool: Helps to querry and analysis on the universe and also share the report among other users. It doesnt require any software, just need a webbrowser and the system connected to the businessobjetcs server.
Auditor: Tool is used for monitor and analysis user and system activity.
Application Foundation: This module covers a set of products which is used for Enterprise Performance Management (EPM). The tools are:
◊ Dashboard manager
◊ Scorecard
◊ Performance Management Applications

What is the difference between aggregate table and materliazed view?
Aggregate table is a generic term to represent the summaries built in a warehouse. MAterilaized view is the technical implementation of these aggregate tables. Though, Materialized views come with the database specific properties which might not be covered with the generic definition of aggregate tables.

What is the use of Degenerated dimension? Where it is used?
A degenerate dimension is a dimension which is derived from the fact table and doesn't have its own dimension table.
Example : Receipt number is the perfect example for degenerate dimension.

What is dimension modeling?
It is a logical design technique that seeks to present the data in a standard intuitive framework that allows for high-performance access.There are different data modelling concepts like ER Modelling(ENtity Relationship modelling) DM (Dimensional modelling) Hierarichal Modelling Network modelling.But popular are ER and DM only.



























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