Some experts on business intelligence argue that BI is needed to run the daily business, while BA is needed to change the business. This simply means that with BI, you create operational efficiency by having access to real-time data. With BA, you explore historical data from multiple source systems.

This explanation should have been sufficient, yet you will often encounter businesses that uses BA the same way others are using BI; as an entire function on its own which encompasses different sub-functions, such as data warehousing, enterprise information and also business intelligence. This diversity of opinions shows that one term can mean different things to different people and businesses - causing much confusion.