The Benefits of OLAP
One main benefit of OLAP is consistency of information and calculations. No matter how much or how fast data is processed through OLAP software or servers, the reporting that results is presented in a consistent presentation, so analysts and executives always know what to look for where. This is especially helpful when comparing information from previous reports to information contained in new ones and projected future ones. It avoids the lengthy discussions about who has the correct information.
"What if" scenarios are some of the most popular uses of OLAP software and are made eminently more possible by multidimensional processing.
Another benefit of multidimensional data presentation is that it allows a manager to pull down data from an OLAP database in broad or specific terms. In other words, reporting can be as simple as comparing a few lines of data in one column of a spreadsheet or as complex as viewing all aspects of a mountain of data.
Also, multidimensional presentation can create an understanding of relationships not previously realized.
OLAP creates a single platform for all the information and business needs; planning, budgeting, forecasting, reporting and analysis.
Last but not least, the learning curve to use OLAP is minimal. The most used interface to analyze data stored in OLAP technology is the well known and loved spreadsheet.
And all of this, of course, can be done in the blink of an eye.