The History of the Evolution of Business Analytics
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October 15, 2023

The History of the Evolution of Business Analytics

Origin and Evolution of Business Analytic

Evolution of Business Analytics

Today, business analytics has become a buzzword for companies around the globe. Every business, irrespective of its size, is on a lookout for different ways to make sense of the vast amount of raw data available. This is because business analytics has been transforming the way companies function for over a decade now. From targeting the right customers and increasing sales to helping HR personnel select the right candidates and reducing overhead costs; there is hardly any sector where data analytics has failed to tap in.

By now, we are sure that you might have a brief idea of why business analytics plays such a vital role. Now, let us take a step back and analyse how did this all start? Why has this field gained popularity just recently? Have the way businesses use data evolved over the years? What did business analytics look like 20 years ago? To help you find answers to all such questions, we have created an in-depth blog. By the end of this blog, you will have a brief idea of how business analytics has evolved over the years.

That’s not all that we have to offer. Are you interested in learning everything about business analytics? This includes its types, applications, benefits, and more. Please go through our previous blog.

Now, let’s get started with the history of business analytics with the help of a timeline, starting from the 1800s to 2023.


How Business Analytics Has Evolved Over the Years?

BA in the 1800s The need to stay ahead

The first use of data to stay ahead of his competitor’s dates back to 1865. During this time, Mr Richard Miller Devens described in his book how Sir Henry Furnese, a banker, was always one step ahead by actively gathering information and acting on it before any of his competitors. This makes it clear that professionals such as Sir Furnese relied more on data and empirical evidence, rather than gut instinct.

BA in the late 1800s – The Advent of Scientific Management

During this time, Frederick Taylor introduced the first-ever system of business analytics in the United States of America, which he called scientific management. The purpose of this system was to analyze production techniques and labourers’ body movements to identify greater efficiencies.

BA in the early 1900s – The Transformation of the Manufacturing Industry

Frederick Taylors’ scientific management system inspired Henry Ford, who hired Taylor as his consultant. Ford was willing to measure the time each component of his Ford Model T took to complete on his assembly line. This analysis transformed his work and the manufacturing industry across the globe.

BA in the 1950s – The first hard drive disk by IBM

Computers were not accessible in the early 1900s but were massively demanded during World War II. As they were still rudimentary, punch cards or tapes were used to store information. However, in 1956, the tech giant IBM invented the first hard disk drive. This allowed users to save a vast amount of data with better flexibility.

BA in the late 1900s – The Emergence of Business Intelligence

Owing to the lower prices for storage space and better databases, the next generation of business intelligence solutions was all set to step in. By now, there was a considerable amount of data available but not a centralized place to store it. To address this problem, Ralph Kimball and Bill Inmon proposed similar strategies to build data warehouses (DW).

BA in the New Millennium – Availability of different analytical solutions

By this time, medium and large-sized businesses had already realized the value of business intelligence solutions. Companies such as IBM, Microsoft, SAP, and Oracle were at the forefront of offering such solutions to change the way businesses function.

BA in 2005 – Accessibility of Data for the Common People

Considering the extensive usage of data, companies started directing their efforts on improving the speed at which the information was available. New business analytics tools were introduced to ensure technical as well as non-technical people were able to mine the data and gain insights.

Around this time, the increasing interconnectivity of the business world led to the need for real-time information. This was when Google Analytics was introduced. Google wanted to provide a free and accessible way for users to analyze their website data.

BA from 2005 to 2022 – The Bread and Butter for Companies Globally

With the internet and increasing data available to almost everyone, companies needed better solutions to store and analyze all the information. Building computers with more storage capacity and better speed wasn’t possible for many, so companies resorted to using several machines simultaneously. This was the beginning of cloud computing.

Since the last decade, big data, cloud computing, and business analytics have become integral for almost all companies. The new advancements have made these technologies even better. Now, data analytics and science are known to be the future. From advertising and marketing to recruiting and planning operational activities, these terms are tossed around in every field.

BA in 2023 – The New Emerging Technologies

In 2023, there was a notable shift in the realm of business analytics, spurred by the escalating data volumes and the heightened demand for data-centric decision-making. Companies adopted novel technologies to delve deeper into insights and tap into untapped potentials. This era marked a transition from conventional techniques towards a more focused and cooperative methodology, enabling businesses to harness the full potential of data in unprecedented ways.

Current Trends in Business Analytics

Business analytics is evolving rapidly, driven by technological advancements and a growing emphasis on data-driven decision-making. Here are some of the current trends shaping the landscape of business analytics:

  1. Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML) Integration: Businesses increasingly leverage AI and ML algorithms to automate processes, gain predictive insights, and improve decision-making accuracy.
  2. Big Data Analytics: With the exponential growth of data, companies are adopting sophisticated big data analytics tools to extract valuable insights and identify trends.
  3. Cloud-Based Analytics: Cloud computing has become integral to business analytics, offering scalability, accessibility, and cost-effectiveness for data storage and analysis.
  4. Predictive Analytics: Organizations are using predictive analytics models to forecast future trends, customer behavior, and market dynamics, enabling proactive decision-making and risk management.
  5. Prescriptive Analytics: Beyond predicting outcomes, prescriptive analytics is gaining traction, providing actionable recommendations to optimize business processes and outcomes.

Future Outlook of Business Analytics

Looking ahead, the future of business analytics holds several exciting prospects and developments. Here are some key future outlooks:

  1. Real-Time Analytics: The focus will shift towards real-time analytics, which will enable businesses to make instant decisions based on live data streams, enhancing agility and competitiveness.
  2. Explainable AI: There will be a greater emphasis on explainable AI, which will ensure transparency and interpretability in AI-driven decision-making processes and build trust and credibility.
  3. Ethical Data Governance: With data privacy concerns rising, ethical data governance frameworks will play a crucial role in ensuring responsible data usage and compliance with regulations.
  4. Augmented Analytics: Augmented analytics tools incorporating natural language processing (NLP) and augmented data discovery capabilities will empower non-technical users to derive insights effortlessly.
  5. Blockchain Integration: Blockchain technology will be integrated into analytics platforms to enhance data security, integrity, and trust in data transactions, particularly in sectors like finance and supply chain management.


From the advent of business analytics in the early 1800s to becoming a part of every business in 2023, we have covered almost every element to help you understand how it has evolved over all these years. If you are willing to make a career in a field expected to rule the corporate world, it is time to sign up for our PGDM in Research and Business Analytics, provided in association with IBM.

Stay tuned with us to learn more about the domain!

ASM's Institute of Business Management & Research, Pune was established in 1983. It is affiliated to University of Pune. It is a prominent institute for higher education in the state of Maharashtra.