Developing a business intelligence strategy: 5 key elements

Many companies have implemented business intelligence piecemeal, but do they need an overarching strategy?

Business Intelligence symbols hover over people working on a computer
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Most companies are in an early adoption phase when it comes to: business intelligence (BI)† They have a few BI implementations but haven’t thought about it globally for their organization; however, there are many benefits to building an overarching BI plan.

Business intelligence is a broad category of data analytics and management technologies that covers every aspect of the business. BI can support both operational and strategic decision-making and is best used when it works within a framework that leverages data across the organization.

This framework can be facilitated by commercial business intelligence tools, but the range of assistance tools is limited if you do not have a BI plan.

TO SEE: Business Intelligence Cheat Sheet: The Complete Guide to 2022 (TechRepublic)

Five elements to consider when building a BI strategy

BI strategies must be carefully designed to fit the needs and culture of the organization you are in. Here are five key elements to consider in your BI strategy:

Management support

Does management understand what BI is and why it matters? Will they support your efforts with budget and human resources?

If the answer to any of these questions is no or not sure, then the strategic BI plan should clear up confusion and misconceptions and build a compelling business case for BI first.

staff readiness

Is your staff ready to develop and support BI?

BI is data and analysis intensive. It should also respond to and solve the needs of the business.

Areas of IT staff where you need solid BI skills are the database group, as many BI data repositories, warehouses and marts will be required to support BI analytics data across the enterprise; the application group, which must understand BI tools and development; and the group of business analysts, who must be able to work effectively with end users to develop the best BI use cases.

Organizational Readiness

The use of business intelligence means a new perspective on business processes and decision-making. It also requires IT staff with expertise in database design, systems integration, data management, and business use case development.

How deep are your staff’s technical skills for BI? Are your users (and their managers) ready to embrace the changes in business processes that BI is likely to bring?

The willingness to move to a BI environment must be well established in IT and the user base before proceeding with an enterprise BI strategy.

A data-centric view

A successful BI infrastructure must be able to work with all kinds of data that can reach all corners of the enterprise. This requires breaking system silos, moving different types of data into one data repository, and ensuring data is consistent and consistent across systems. accurate so that it can be used to the maximum.

All this is not possible without a strong data architecture consisting of different data marts, warehouses and repositories that can all work together and exchange data within your BI framework.

The right BI partners

There are many different BI consultants and software vendors, but not all of them offer the same level of BI expertise.

Finding a supplier in your industry who is also familiar with the specific needs of your business is a great asset. If you’re new to BI and developing BI strategies, it’s helpful to collaborate with others who have traveled the route.

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