Business intelligence, or BI, is a process of data analysis. Its goal is to boost the performance of a company by assisting corporate executives and other end users to make more education decisions.
Business intelligence has many benefits to a business, including the optimisation of internal business processes, the increasing of operational efficiency, and the gaining of competitive advantage.
When the volume of data gathered and used by a business becomes too much for traditional processing systems to handle, it is often time for the implementation of BI software. However, it can be difficult to know when the time to implement BI software has arrived.
Too Many Data Sources
If you or your managers and end users are finding it difficult to understand the connections between all of the data sets in the different systems being used to run reports, this is a sign that BI software may be needed. Spending time trying to make sense of data sets is just one sign that there is a lot of work going into the collection of a very small amount of insight, something that the implementation of BI software can most certainly address.
Lots of Data, No Information
Does your business suffer from a lack of real and useful information? Sometimes, the difference between data and information is forgotten. An organisation can excel at collecting data, but converting that data into information can be another story entirely. Business intelligence software can help business realise their business goals by processing data effectively.
Collected Data Is Not Giving You the Answers You Need
A report can be a very useful tool when starting analysis. However, it cannot display the core metrics that are crucial to guiding business decisions. If your data is not telling you how your business is doing in a particular area, or is not delivering data that is clear or actionable, it’s time to implement a BI solution.
Excel Is No Longer Enough To Handle the Amount of your Data
Excel can more than meet the reporting needs of any business. However, if your reports have started to include too much data for Excel to handle, the program can become very cumbersome to use. A BI tool can gather data from multiple sources including Excel and display it in a manner that’s coherent.
Repeated Data Editing By IT Is Slowing Things Down
Businesses that don’t have a BI system in place use their IT department to create the elaborate reports that result from the gathering and processing of data. However, regular returns of reports to IT for tweaking and editing will eventually result in increased downtime. If this is happening in your business, a BI tool can optimise the time it takes to process data.
What Results Can Be Expected Once BI Implementation is Complete?
There are several things to expect once BI has been implemented in your business. First of all, you’ll discover that guesswork is a thing of the past, as your executives will no longer rely on hunches when trying to make future projections.
You will also find that you will get answers to your business questions far more quickly. This is because it will no longer be necessary to pore over reports to extract data before processing it.
The delivery of reports containing key business metrics occurs whenever and where ever they may be needed, thanks the enabling of data access on mobile devices.
Once BI has been implemented, you will be able to see how customers behave. You will know what they are buying, which will make it possible to better target your advertising.
Finally, implementing BI allows you to not only use customer data, but leverage it to give sales representatives the ability to cross-sell and up-sell products to customers at particular touch points.
Widespread BI Implementation and the Future of Business
There are many exciting predictions about the future with BI implementation. Not only is it suspected that rapid integration of multiple simple interfaces will take place, but also that conversations with data will occur thanks to high interactivity. The analysis will also be able to be done from virtually anywhere with the maturation of mobile.