Are you a first-time business intelligence (BI) buyer and wondering if and how it can help your business? Well, you are in the right place, as this post gives you the basic knowledge of what business intelligence is and how it can help your organization.
There was a time when IT was steering businesses, especially the data analytics department. Businesses were always after the data analysis before rolling out their business intelligence (BI) projects. However, the evolution of technology has ushered in a multitude of business intelligence solutions.
Business intelligence (BI) refers to software solutions that can help transform your company's data into valuable insights. These analytics identify feasible and actionable strategies that you can use to make tactical business decisions.
You can use business intelligence to analyze the information and data and formulate summaries, charts, graphs, reports, and roadmaps. These graphical and visual representations can offer your business a detailed insight into where your business or a certain project currently stands.
With all these valuable insights into your business operations, you can re-imagine your business. The analytics BI offers to your business can offer you a competitive edge over other competitors.
BI solution can generate individual data analysis reports. However, you can consolidate all your data via a dashboard provided in a software application. That said, business intelligence is a pure analytics solution and does not predict a definite outcome if you deploy a strategy.
Business intelligence will help you understand the data and derive an analytical insight based on your business's data legacy.
For example, suppose you are a manufacturer wishing to improve your production operations. BI solution can help you identify the areas causing delays, functions you can improve to enhance productivity, etc.
Before you start shopping for a BI solution, you must research a little bit into the types of business intelligence users within your business. You must figure out which users or departments in your company will be using data analytics and it is going to benefit them or present new sets of challenges.
Let us have a quick look at typical business intelligence users.
Now that you know about the business intelligence solutions and how they can help the user groups in your business, it is time to prepare for the rollout. However, there are some basic requirements you must consider before implementing business intelligence.
The first thing to consider is to establish the rules and effectively implement the business intelligence solution. You must determine the role of each user, what data they will receive, and how frequently. This will help your business to make strategic decisions.
You must consider carefully how you would want your BI users to access it. For example, traveling users such as senior management and sales personnel will need remote access to the content. Plus, you will have to optimize the data analysis in formats supported by various devices such as laptops, smartphones, and tablets.
If you are a first-time business intelligence buyer, chances are your users do not have any skills or technical knowledge of how to use BI. Therefore, it is highly likely that most of the employees will be consuming the data insight to make informed decisions.
You must identify the users with the required skill set to analyze the data or may need the training to use the BI. If the users have prior knowledge about ERPs and advanced Excels, this may help them adapt to using the new business intelligence solution.
You must do some homework on what will be the role of each user group when using BI. You must also consider how business intelligence solution will enhance their current job roles.
For example, the sales and marketing team will use the data to create more effective campaigns. On the other hand, senior executives will use the data insights to evaluate KPIs and work on areas of improvement.
Here are some additional questions you must ask when choosing a BI solution for your business.
As a first-time buyer, you must choose a BI solution that can offer a complete package with all the functionalities your organization needs. This will help with smooth integration and allow a one-stop platform for all user groups to use and share the information.