Document Type



This item is available under a Creative Commons License for non-commercial use only

Publication Details

Dissertation submitted for the award of MSc. in Computing (Knowledge Management).


Business Intelligence (BI) systems have a pivotal role to play in assisting retail management in the Irish grocery retail sector. The emergence of super chain stores and the increasing competition within this sector only increases their need for an effective and reliable Business Intelligence (BI) system. However, despite this growing need Business Intelligence (BI) systems as they are currently deployed and used are not supplying the various levels of management with the necessary information they require to make effective retail management decisions. The information and reports received from Business Intelligence (BI) systems lack structure, are missing important pieces of information and do not provide a holistic view of the enterprise wide data. In particular the separation of data into separate pools prevents managers from getting the cross sectional view of the organisation necessary for effective decision making. The solution to the problem involves the use of information architectures. These information architectures allow the retail grocery organisations to examine their information sources, information flow processes and establish what management’s information requirements are. The use of information architecture therefore enables a company to establish what its needs are from a Business Intelligence (BI) system independent of any particular technology. Therefore it can fit its Business Intelligence (BI) tools around its own unique processes and needs in order to successfully meet the needs of the various levels of management. This research presents the findings of a survey into the usage of Business Intelligence (BI) systems currently within the Irish grocery retail sector. The findings indicate that retail management are not getting the information and reports they require to make effective decisions. Building on these findings, and the learning gained from a literature view into the area, an information architecture was developed. The information architecture has a number of applications to grocery retailers such as providing a guide to retailers developing a Business Intelligence (BI) system from scratch or as a guide to retailers currently using Business Intelligence (BI) systems on how to maximise their return from it.