Software Tools for Competitive Intelligence

Free and commercial software provide key tools for gathering information and analyzing data from open sources. Currently, there are a significant number of open source tools that make information available to a large variety of professionals. Additionally, new portable devices such as smartphones and tablets make information even more accessible. However, it is not clear how software tools can provide the best value to CI practitioners.

MINIERA, launched a survey for better understanding how Software Tools are utilized by CI practitioners. Our key research question where:

  • Do CI practitioners use free or commercial software?
  • Which aspects are utilized the most by users?
  • Are tablets and smartphones becoming increasingly important for CI practitioners in their job?

This document reports and comments the answers gathered.

- Survey data on software tool utilization by CI practitioners was collected from November 2012 to February 2013 .
- The on-line questionnaire () generated 179 answers from a variety of companies world-wide. 149 were valid responses.
- CI practitioners adopt slightly more free tools (67.2%) than commercial tools (53.7%). The data shows that commercial tools are used by more than half of the respondents. However, 26% of the respondents said that they were using both types.
- CI practitioners use a variety of commercial software tools, well-known names in a number of categories: Databases, Content Management, Office Packages, CI focused and Cloud based software, etc. They use tools that gather, visualize and share information about Competitors, Markets, Products, Technology, etc.
- “Searching” is used “constantly” by 48.2% of the respondents, and dominates the practice.
- “Crawling the internet”, “Getting Alerts” and “Filtering” are being used “constantly” by more than 32% of the respondents. “Visualizing/Reading” is used at least frequently by more than 60% of the respondents.
- Although there are several devices available such as “Phones” and “Tablets”, the PC is the most used tool by 78% of the respondents.
- Mobile phones are preferred over tablets, but both lag well behind PC use.

Interested in receiving a copy of this study?
Contact us at http://www.miniera.es/en/contact and we will send you a digital copy.