BI business intelligence

How Do Businesses Use Business Intelligence?

Where business people can find non-technical, big picture, practical information about Business Intelligence (BI), Performance Management, and Data Warehousing (DW). How do businesses use business intelligence?

Business Intelligence for Business People

Whether you’re looking into BI for the first time or you want to take your organization to the next step by using knowledge and wisdom from information as a strategic advantage. This lens will give you information unbiased by vendors and based on real-world experience. It is all about how you Strategize. Plan. Analyze. Report.  … and repeat.

BI Approach

“Think big; act in small, iterative cycles.”

BI Benefits

  • Closes the management gap between strategy and execution.
  • Enables shift to a performance-based, analytical culture.
  • Attention to long-term strategy, not just short-term operational details.
  • Financial savings from reducing manual efforts spent on reporting.

BI Risks

  • Results produce far too little business value after high development and maintenance costs.
  • Internal IT departments creating 100% custom solutions and not seeking out BI experts.

What Is Business Intelligence?

Business Intelligence (BI) leverages one of the largest company assets – information. Successful BI projects give organizations a competitive advantage that could increase revenues and improve operational efficiencies. BI has evolved past using departmental Excel spreadsheets. BI is now an important part of an organization’s strategic decision-making and there are many modern IT tools can improve business intelligence.

BI systems address the challenges enterprises face when managing their reporting needs at all levels of the organization.

  • Done right, it can benefit everyone from top executives to front-line staff.
  • Improve your bottom line.
  • Increase your business effectiveness.
  • Help you and your employees understand your organization better.
  • Help you be more effective as a manager or a leader.
  • Reduce or remove the manual effort spent doing reporting.

With Business Intelligence, you can move beyond viewing “customers,” “workforce,” “supply chain” or “finances” (for example) as separate functions, and begin considering all the core elements of your business as a single, integrated whole. The result enables you to measure the accuracy and success of your goals and objectives from various perspectives and make intelligent decisions based on quantifiable analytics.

This is more than simply reporting. This is looking at trends over time, analyzing by “location”, “sales codes”, and “product categories” (for example). This is moving from a summary-level down to the details seamlessly. This is allowing users to be self-sufficient in their business questions and accurately tracking the organization’s performance.

What is Performance Management?

Performance management allows organizations to achieve their strategic goals by transforming strategies into actionable indicators that give profitable insights to decision-makers. These performance indicators are defined and measured in a quantifiable way. They are measured against goals, target levels, and industry benchmarks. What gets measured, gets managed.

Software is used to capture the measurements of the business and empower management decisions. A performance measurement system can stand-alone or be an integral part of a Business Intelligence system by pulling information from an existing warehouse for consistency and accuracy.

Are You Prepared for Business Intelligence?

Being prepared when undertaking a BI project will considerably increase your chances of success and maximize your return on the time, effort, and finances you’ll be spending.

  • Do you have a strong Business Sponsor willing to stand behind your BI project?
  • Do you have the staff available to work on this project? Time from business users is a must.
  • Where in your organization will see the biggest benefits from BI?
  • What software toolset has the features that will meet your needs today? Going into tomorrow?
  • Seek information from people who have “been there & done that”. Find BI experts, consultants, or other companies with a track record and learn from them.

About the author: Erica R. Gibson is a tech writer at the service where everyone can ask to write my essay. She is fond of learning something new. In this case, likes reading self-development blogs to improve her professional and personal knowledge.

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