What BI can do for your business
Insights lead to better, faster, more relevant decisions by all employees.
There are four primary ways Business Intelligence is used to improve an organisation's ability to manage business change.
For the organisation, BI helps to generate forecasts and information to justify and support business plans such as sales quotas, throughput or cost targets. For the individual as well, BI driven task lists can help to plan the day.
BI can be used to track progress and keep you informed of how well your business is running and whether you are meeting your goals. For manufacturing this could be a dashboard showing production line use and spare capacity, for a customer service operation it could be calls being taken and calls lost.
Reporting what has happened is the first step in refining the business cycle, allowing you to continually update plans to make improvements and maximise use of resources or opportunities. Reports are no longer static. With the incredible capabilities of modern tools to slice and dice and drill down to lower levels of detail you can identify and smooth out the pinch points in your operation.
BI provides the tools for making longer term strategic business decisions by analysing and identifying trends in your own performance and the drivers of your business. They can highlight changes in demand for your products or services from different sectors or show how bottlenecks have built up in your operations which have restricted your ability to deliver. The data may be in different systems (ERP, CRM, bespoke databases) which need joining and consolidating to permit meaningful evaluation.
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What BI can do for your people
Business Intelligence supports the ways people work and work together. There are three principal types of BI:
Personal (or Self-Service)
We all create our own data and calculations that give us control over the information we need for our daily tasks. These are commonly in the form of spreadsheets, plans, task lists, or our own working copies of data extracted from our organisations' systems. The use of modern self-service BI tools and techniques can give us greater analytical power and real-time access to more up-to-date corporate information.
Personal efforts at work are generally part of a larger team goal. Team business intelligence links groups of people together and empowers them with the right tools for sharing collaborating, and managing information in a group setting.
The larger strategic goals and objectives set by the organisation: net profit, top line revenue, market share – are not just the concern of senior management. These are the numbers all employees are working to achieve. Organisational BI has a major role to play, not just in reporting after the event, but also in helping to run the business. Individual and team tasks ultimately roll up into the goals and objectives set by the organisation.This affects how people get paid, staffing levels, and what happens to the stock price.
A Continuum of Business Intelligence
When you think of your overall business intelligence needs – for you, your team, and your organisation, what emerges is a continuum of BI functionality that is required accross the organisation.
Parity provides the tools and know-how for bringing your data together and making is useful, whether it's for you personally, your team or your enterprise. More