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5 ways to initiate a Business Intelligence programme for your company
Before implementing Business Intelligence in its best possible way, a clear understanding is to be made of what BI is and how exactly it is beneficial for companies. "Business Intelligence compromises the strategies and technologies used by enterprises for the data analysis of business information.", as explained by Wikipedia. In simpler terms, the purpose of BI in a business is to help the company's executives and business managers to transform raw data into useful information that will enable them to carry out well-informed and more effective decisions related to the company.
Here is how companies can best implement a successful Business Intelligence initiative:
1. Construct a plan of action before your initiative.
Before implementing a completely new method or strategy for the company, you must gather your requirements up front and make sure that all stakeholders are involved before the initiation. Just having the right technology and a clear data roadmap is not all that is needed; you need to have an organization that can consume information and develops insight.
2. Create long-term goals with the number one person in your organization.
This elongated and also costly nature of analytics will most definitely require assistance, and hence, a CIO should view the BI project as a programme and not a temporary change. It would be the responsibility of a CIO to realize that this initiative is much more than accomplishing short-term goals, and therefore one must make sure that the number one person at the organization is the key sponsor for the initiative of the BI Programme.
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3. Use a specialist to prioritize the phases of the initiative.
Rather than imposing the programme to all departments implement the BI application to one department at a time. This way you can dedicate your resources little at a time and make sure it eases out smooth and successfully to the rest of the departments. Business Intelligence should be viewed as a "forever programme" but acomplishing quick wins, especially in the early days will help demonstrate the benefits to doubters. You must always think in terms of long-term aims but you can also get short term success quickly if you create an effective balance between technology, IT capability, commercial talent and data architecture.
4. Establish a definite outlook of success.
A CIO must have a fixed outlook on what success in terms of Busines Intelligence looks like as it will vary depending on the audience. Realising that BI helps towards better decision making and defining what it needs to deliver to enable that insight, is absolutely critical. Since business requirements change over time, CIOs must ensure that their BI programme has the technical capability to match with these new developments.
5. Provide clear and detailed information.
Great BI is said to be about understanding what you and your colleagues are going to do differently tomorrow because of the insight you have today but unless you can decide and act upon those decisions, analytics will just be numbers on the screen. The BI exists not just to find out what is wrong with the company, it is to also measure what is not good for it. With the information received one must immediately spring to action after a detailed understanding of the information.
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By Prashant Kumar, Founder & CEO, TechBlocks