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Business Process Improvement Authors: Prince Kumar, Dana Gardner, Continuum Blog, Automic Blog, Liz McMillan

Related Topics: Business Intelligence, Business Process Improvement

Article

A Case for Business Intelligence

Gain real-time business insight through business intelligence

Everyone has heard the business maxim: you cannot manage what you cannot measure. No one seems to be given original credit for this quote, but chances are there are many frustrated Chief Financial Officers (CFOs) and Chief Executive Officers (CEOs) that have used it many times trying to get timely and actionable organizational insight.

As organizations grow in scope and complexity, aggregating real-time data from numerous systems and converting that data to decision-ready information becomes increasingly challenging. When striving for Business Performance Improvement (BPI), Business Intelligence technology provides the necessary framework to gain the insight needed to lead to better decisions.  Below are five guidelines to identify an effective business intelligence solution to help companies turn data into wisdom by organizing and presenting it in easy to understand dashboards:

The Five High-Level Guidelines for effective Business Intelligence Solutions are:

1.     Simplify the Complex.
Information presented needs to be easily understood and useful.

2.     Rapid Time to Value.
Businesses should see improved insight in weeks, not months.

3.     Meet Specific Business Requirements.
Clearly defined execution plan and the BPI benefits expected from BI.

4.     Based on Users' Needs.
It must have strong adoption from the key decision makers.

5.     Establish Clear Key Performance Indicators (KPIs)
Agree on how the business will know progress is being made.

Business Intelligence Technology is a critical element in Business Performance Improvement. The organization outlines its high-level goals which are represented by improving performance and strategy which are supported by activities. Those activities are implemented through defined processes. First, the metrics or key performance indicators needed to help you understand your real-time performance need to be defined. To properly design the dashboards, the identified KPIs need to be considered in relation to where the data comes from, and any process or data accumulation changes required.

By grabbing data from different sources, the Business Intelligence Solution allows for clear presentation of KPIs delivering insight to the organization, allowing it make improvements. Key decision makers can then make informed decisions that will further improve the organization's performance.

Where BI fits in the Business Performance Improvement Cycle

By layering Business Intelligence on top of other programs such as marketing, sales and service operations or general operations, real-time insight can lead to critical adjustments.

More Stories By Sarah Parker

Sarah Templeton serves as the Director of Marketing and manages all aspects of Templeton's strategic marketing, public relations initiatives, as well as sponsorships and special events. Prior to joining Templeton, Sarah marketed professional services in the civil engineering and health care industries. Her work has included award-winning branding campaigns, marketing and recruiting strategies, complete collateral and website design and development.