The realm of business intelligence is constantly changing to incorporate the needs of users as well as new technologies on the market. With this shift comes emerging trends that company administrators should be aware of and leverage for the benefit of their own organizations. In the interest of staying a step ahead of competitors, here are a few of the emerging trends in the BI sector:

BI in the cloud

InformationWeek contributor Cindi Howson noted that although the cloud played a major role in nearly every area of technology last year, the same cannot be said for business intelligence. However, this practice is poised to shift this year, as BI users realize the vast benefits the cloud can offer.

In addition to enabling anytime, anywhere Web-based reporting, Howson noted that the cloud can save considerable resources within a business, including freeing up time for employees. Time typically spent updating software and maintaining infrastructure arrangements can be shifted to the cloud service provider, allowing these individuals to focus on other critical areas of the company.

Mobile BI

While mobile business intelligence is by no means new to the sector, Dataversity contributor Jeliani Harper noted as cloud computing permeates the market, mobile BI will become more important and widely utilized. A recent Gartner report showed that 42 percent of organizations adopted mobile BI systems in 2013.

"Mobile devices play a substantial role in the consumerization of IT and of BI in particular, as the plethora of smartphones and tablet devices indicates," Harper wrote. "Although adoption rates for mobile BI are still relatively low, the rates are growing faster for mobile than for other technologies."

Increased focus on the end user

Gartner research also shows that BI service providers will increasingly invest in products aimed at the end user, according to Harper. In this way, a number of new tools, including data visualization and other discovery applications, will emerge on the market specifically designed to meet the needs of business users.