Business analytics (BA) is the practice of iterative, methodical exploration of an organization’s data with emphasis on statistical analysis.  Business analytics is used by companies committed to data-driven decision making. Business analytics (BA) refers to the skills, technologies, practices for continuous iterative exploration and investigation of past business performance to gain insight and drive business planning. Business analytics focuses on developing new insights and understanding of business performance based on data and statistical methods. In contrast, business intelligence traditionally focuses on using a consistent set of metrics to both measure past performance and guide business planning, which is also based on data and statistical methods. (citation needed)

BA is used to gain insights that inform business decisions and can be used to automate and optimize business processes.  Data-driven companies treat their data as a corporate asset and leverage it for competitive advantage. Successful business analytics depends on data quality, skilled analysts who understand the technologies and the business and an organizational commitment to data-driven decision making.