Spoiler Alert !! Your BI reports are being read by no one.
One of my Professors would say – “You are too early for tomorrow” when we were just a little bit late to the class.
BI reports remind me of that statement but rather in a true sense i.e. “Too late for today”. That means these reports get obsolete before they can be put to use.
Should you junk your BI reports if no one is reading them?
Erica is the Sales Head in a large pharmaceutical company. She needs to check the stats of a new drug for the treatment of asthma, launched last week in the North African countries.
She has 2 options :
- Ask Sophia (her business analyst) to create a report
- Check daily sales dashboard ( built on a well known BI platform)
She wants to choose option 2, instead, Option 1 chooses her.
Sophia can pull in data and create the sales report in maybe a day, while the inclusion of the new drug into the sales dashboard will take another 10-12 days.
Sales environment is dynamic, so should be the BI platforms built for reporting sales figures, which ought to be the foundation of decision making in organizations. With the lag of information being shown on the BI platforms and their non-agility, it could be a huge opportunity loss for companies who would depend on non-agile BI platforms solely, for their decision making.
Time taken to change/generate a new BI report is far greater than time available to make a decision
Therefore, most decisions are taken without the use of insights, despite relevant data being available in data warehouses, waiting to be discovered. By the time insights reach the end-user, it’s just too late. Erica’s company could suffer a great deal of repercussions because of this latency –
- Delay in getting hands on data, could lead to delay in required actions, would mean opportunities loss
- Flawed or gut based predictions without a solid data backing, lead to stakeholders’ distrust, loss of face value in the industry
Role of a CIO – How can CIO in Erica’s company salvage the situation?
- digging into the business models where data and analytics are needed,
- understanding the core issues preventing data adoption,
- identifying the causes of latency, and,
- strategizing how to solve problems in a sustainable and effective way
- investing into BI tools that lowers the barrier for data consumption and promotes data democratization
Before proceeding further, let’s get some basics right – let’s understand the goals of a BI platform :
- Build data driven organization, where decisions are backed by analytically derived insights rather than intuition or experience
- Break functional barriers, eliminate data silos, and create a single source of truth
But is that truly happening with the current BI platforms? Let’s look at some relevant stats*-
- 62% of companies claim that self-service business intelligence is essential in 2021 for their employees
- 1 out of 4 companies claim they have no single source of truth when it comes to centralized data
- For a majority of the workforce, it can take hours to several days to find the right data they need. Only 3% of employees are able to get the relevant data in seconds
- 63% of employees report they cannot gather insights in their required timeframe
Your people don’t need more data to ace the Data Olympics. They need to be more aware of data and be able to use the existing data for their plans.
Legacy dashboards and even the newer BI tools are just not cutting it for progressive organizations. People are just too exhausted looking for the right data as the quantity of data increases, but the efficiency of tools doesn’t. They are just too scared to start digging for the right data, and even if they do, they are very likely to give up at some point, given the complexity and volume of data to be dug.
BI Reports should not be long boring essays that are redundant by the time they are written. BI reports generation process should be agile and BI reports should be quick to access and simple to read.
Look at how Beagle is solving challenges put forth by other BI tools
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