Investing in Business intelligence is a vital part of today’s business world. The advent of e-commerce and big data has made BI essential to daily business functions. In order to grow, businesses need to make BI investing a key priority. It’s easy to understand why BI is important, but it can be difficult to see the best ways to invest in your BI solution. Today, we’ll show you the best ways to invest in BI.
BI Investing Should Support Your Business Culture
Even the best BI systems may not be a match for your business. Pay close attention to user interfaces. No matter how good the features of a system may be, the real value lies in the workflow established by the intuitive controls. How easily can the system be used? Does it fit neatly into your established business practices? How well does the system match up to your existing BI needs? Once you’ve established how well your BI investment will conform to your business, you can begin looking at additional benefits. Always make sure you aren’t facing losses, first, though. Long-term returns won’t be so rewarding if you lose twenty percent of your existing productivity. Most importantly, make sure the BI solutions you are considering an investment in will support and further your existing business goals. New goals are good, but BI should be able to meet your business where it is today.
Consider Short-Term Returns
Short-term returns boost the cash flow that will help you recoup initial costs. Unless you have a very deep business account that you rarely touch for anything besides new investments, you will need some immediate returns. If that capital isn’t returned quickly, the cost will have to be borne by other departments, and your business will naturally regress.
Short-term returns from BI could include insight into regular customers, analysis of dissatisfied customers’ complaints, and forecasts of trends that will allow you to immediately rectify these issues. A happy customer can always be happier, and an unhappy customer can be lured back once their complaints have been addressed.
Other short-term returns include office supply management, employee time management, and other BI tools that boost efficiency. Cutting back overhead provides real savings that can help cover the price of your BI investing endeavors. It also carries into long-term returns.
Consider Long-Terms Returns
BI investing is all about the long-term. You don’t have to wait to begin planning for the future. BI gives businesses the chance to solve internal funding leaks and predict consumer trends. The data you receive can be transformed instantly into marketing schemes, expansion plans, and departmental revisions that will staunch the funding leaks. Investing in BI requires a plan ahead of purchase as to how you expect to use the product, but it also requires attention to detail in order to catch surprising opportunities.
You should always invest in BI that is going to help pay for itself in the short-term and grow your business in the long-term. Fitting the right BI solutions with your established business practices will take some time, a lot of work, and a great customer service team on the part of the developers. Don’t settle for less. BI investing will only help your company if it’s the right fit. Once you’ve found the right product, look for ways to increase both short-term and long-term returns. Plan in advance, but keep your creativity ready to address sudden opportunities and surprises. This is how you should invest in BI.