In today's business environment, having the right information is not enough. In a world where competition is fiercer than ever and where technological change occurs rapidly and alter the rules of the game daily, managers are seeking new ways to make better decisions. Information is merely the starting point of the decision-making process; the analysis thereof and the resulting decision is much more important. Turning raw data and information into actionable knowledge is fast becoming the most critical management tool.
Many emerging economies regard Competitive Intelligence as a way to win economic wars against larger industrialised countries. What makes Competitive Intelligence even more critical in the new, post-industrial era is the growth of high-tech industries such as telecommunications, biotechnology, fibre optics and computers. Unlike the manufactured products of the past, the cornerstone of these industries is knowledge.