In the process of researching my recent post on Management Horizons Data Systems, I came across an excerpt from a 1972 marketing brochure (quoted in the “History of Management Horizons” piece cited there). General notes include:
- The brochure quote basically pitches business intelligence/ performance management, with unconstrained drilldown.
- Pitching BI/analytics benefits for what start out as being transactional applications has been going on for pretty much the whole history of the applications industry. This just happens to be a great proof point.
- The unconstrained drilldown part could almost be taken for granted today, in the relational era. In 1972, however, it was a rather bold (and for all I know exaggerated) claim.
The exact verbiage is:
1. The system should focus management attention on the critical variables in distribution profitability, providing measures of the productivity of all key resources of the firm.
2. Where deviations from expected performance levels are detected, they should be highlighted on an exception basis, so that managers can allocate their most critical resource — time — to the problems or opportunities that variances in performance represent.
3. The manager should be able to pursue the analysis of an exception to whatever level of detailed information is needed to take positive action; and the system should, therefore, permit the manager to secure information at any desired level of detail without prior knowledge of his information needs.