Here is Wikipedia’s Business Intelligence definition:
“Business intelligence (BI) comprises the strategies and technologies used by enterprises for the data analysis of business information. BI technologies provide historical, current, and predictive views of business operations. Common functions of business intelligence technologies include reporting, online analytical processing, analytics, dashboard development, data mining, process mining, complex event processing, business performance management, benchmarking, text mining, predictive analytics, and prescriptive analytics.”
While this definition is technically accurate, let’s simplify it and put it in context here. A business intelligence solution is meant to provide a flexible platform for the user to process, access and visualize large amounts of data from multiple systems. “Business intelligence”, in this context, is an umbrella term for the “Hard Stuff” that companies want to achieve in their business systems. These difficult activities are ultimately aimed at enabling forecasting and predictive analytics. Single systems will fall short in these complex areas, which is where companies start to look into Enterprise BI.