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Business Intelligence and Information Technology

Challenges to Implementing the First BI

10 August 2021

If you are thinking of implementing Business intelligence in your company, this post can help!

It is common at first, when we think about BI (Business intelligence), imagine something very subjective and complicated to be effectively structured in a company. In this publication we will demystify this matter and show that a BI strategy despite being a complex task, it's nothing out of this world!

Throughout the posts, the following contents will be addressed:

 

Image Credits: Lukas / Pexels, 2021

What is Business Intelligence?

If you're about to implement BI in your company, you probably already know what it's about, don't you? However, it is worth remembering, cHow we publish on our Linkedin page: BI is a set of practices and tools that aim to transform data from various sources into useful information that can assist in strategic decision making. Business intelligence (or Business Intelligence), therefore, it is not a specific tool or technology, but a set of them, oriented to the needs of each project.

Taking this into account, we must understand that a certain tool may make sense for certain businesses, but not for others. Another important point that companies and managers should consider is whether the company really needs a BI strategy.

Despite being a powerful way of organizing data and generating strategic insights, depending on some variables, implementing BI may not be the best option

This happens with small companies or companies with very small databases and data flows, in addition to companies that do not have their information digitized or digitally managed. On the other hand, these factors are not totally impeding, if it is in the company's interest, it is possible to carry out the implementation of BI.

Defining a clear goal for implementing the first BI

  • What do you hope to achieve with implementing BI?
  • Do you want to increase your sales in quantity or in quality?
  • Want to improve customer satisfaction?
  • Do you want to be more efficient with your operations or with the productivity of your teams?

These types of questions are important to have a clear objective for the real usefulness of BI in your company.

After understanding your priorities and needs, it is interesting to create a long-term plan for your business, only later should BI systems be used to help meet the outlined objectives.

In addition to the company's technical team (which is usually called on several times for the implementation and execution of BI), it is important to involve managers, directors and the executive team, so that everyone is aware and aligned with the company's objectives and how the Business Intelligence will help, even if they are not information technology experts.

 

 

What is needed to implement the first BI?

 

As we've already seen, BI is all about data. After having accumulated a lot of data and having defined the objectives you want to achieve, you will already have an idea of ​​the areas of the company and the data sources that you should use.  

The next step, then, would be to understand if you are collecting the key information – and if you are collecting it correctly – that will be important to “feed” BI. 

  • What is the source of the information?
  • Are there inconsistencies in the collected data?
  • Is there important data that is currently not collected?

These questions are important for us to understand if our current software (such as CRM's, ERP's, etc) satisfactorily meet the collection and storage of data that will be used in BI.

Understand that BI will need data sources to generate results and even a simple Excel spreadsheet, made “by hand” and not by software, can provide important data for BI. Of course, manual spreadsheets tend to contain human errors, which is not advisable, although it is possible.

Knowing the importance of data (and correctly understanding its origin and maintenance within your company), now is the time to concretely decide what makes sense for your organization. 

Is your need for something that integrates all existing data and produces charts and reports showing who is performing best? Or do you want to identify new sources of information and better ways to measure sales performance, teams, etc?

More questions that will guide us to the next step:

 

Image credits: Startup Stock Photos, 2021

Choosing the best BI tool

 

Once again, it's your specific needs that will help you understand which Business Intelligence platform is best for your business.

Regardless of how basic or advanced your BI solution needs to be, there are a few core features that most major systems offer (or should):

  • Interactive reports and dashboards, which can be automatically updated to provide real-time data on changing conditions, rather than static dashboards that provide a single view. Reporting capabilities also allow users to quickly and easily create reports using familiar tools and intuitive interfaces. 
  • intelligent data analysis with features that unify disparate data sources for a comprehensive view that improves analysis and makes errors easier to detect and correct. When we talk about errors, we are referring to possible errors arising from manual methods and “patched” legacy systems. 
  • Data visualization and key performance indicators (KPIs) enable users to generate valuable insights business, reducing manual efforts and saving time. 

Microsoft Power BI

 

Although there are different platforms and tools for implementing and structuring BI, without a doubt that one of the most complete and robust on the market is the Power BI

It is a tool for converting data from various data sources into interactive dashboards and analysis reports. O Power BI offers cloud-based services for interactive visualizations with a simple interface for end users to create their own reports and dashboards.

Different versions of Power BI are available, like desktop, SaaS and mobile applications. O Power BI has several types of licenses, with free and paid plans. 

Finally, to implement the Business intelligence in your company, all it takes is willpower and planning. You can do this internally, using your technology team or hiring specialized companies for this. 

we, in the VFR Tech, we are specialized and certified in the implementation and management of Power BI, for companies of any size and in any segment. We have clients across Europe and we are experts at delivering results.

If you are interested, get in touch and we set up a meeting without commitments. We are sure that BI can do a lot for your company and, with our help, it can do even more!

     

     

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