Three keys to building an effective business intelligence platform

By - July 21, 2016

In today’s highly competitive business environment, organizations should look to leverage all opportunities to gain insight and make better, more informed business decisions. To that end, more and more companies are turning to business intelligence (BI) platforms to harness the power of their data by converting it to actionable information. To build a comprehensive BI platform, companies must focus on three key aspects:

  • Data foundation: The ultimate goals of BI solutions are to provide insights that facilitate proactive decision making, create a competitive advantage and drive improved organizational performance. The data foundation forms the basis for all types of reporting and analytics by integrating data from multiple sources to establish one useful, uniform format. The objective is to provide integrated, trusted and timely data from which sophisticated reporting and analytics can be performed.A robust data foundation provides one-stop shopping for data – a single version of the truth. It drives a common understanding across the enterprise and facilitates organizational communication and collaboration. Implementing an effective data foundation is essential for gaining a significant return on investment from BI with greater visibility to make more effective decisions
  • Reporting, analytics and information delivery: When implemented effectively, the right reporting, analytics and information delivery strategy can fundamentally change the way people perform their jobs and make decisions. Some key benefits of a solid strategy include:
      • Improved productivity levels
      • Increased employee satisfaction
      • Better analysis and decision-making capabilities
      • Improved communication and collaboration
      • Deciding which capabilities to utilize can be a daunting task for many companies. A range of options exist, so be sure to focus on each and consider how well they align with business goals in order to increase the overall success of the BI environment. 
  • Strategy and data management: To realize the power of data, effective strategy and data management must include a clear vision of the value data can have as a strategic asset, and devise a plan to institutionalize the concept of enterprise data and ingrain it into the culture of the organization. Efficient processes, proven best practices and enabling technologies must also be incorporated to support and manage the use of organizational data. Lastly, it’s critical to adopt a continuous improvement mindset in order to maintain and improve BI capabilities over the long term.

Enhanced reporting and analytics can be transformational for an organization. They provide trusted, enterprise-validated data resulting in:

  • More consistency across the business
  • Improved collaboration and communication
  • Increased productivity
  • Reduced cost of technology ownership

The path to designing and implementing a successful BI solution can be a challenging journey, but for many organizations, it pays dividends many times over. The right strategy can make the journey easier, provide valuable insights and provide an early return on investment.  To understand the importance of a comprehensive BI platform read our three part series and to learn more about how RSM can assist you with your other business needs, contact RSM’s management consulting professionals at 800.274.3978 or email us.


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