Successful businesses require strong, evidence-based decision-making. Today, business leaders have various tools to help them make the best possible decisions. Business intelligence (BI) and analytics platforms, in particular, allow companies to gather and analyze their data to gain unprecedented insights.
Beyond analyzing the data companies collect, BI platforms also present that analysis in accessible, user-friendly formats so anyone can engage with the data. If you want to use a modern business intelligence and analytics platform at your company, follow the steps outlined below for a smooth implementation process.
Why are Businesses Increasingly Using BI to Make Decisions?
BI tools offer businesses many benefits, from improving decision-making to increasing customer satisfaction. So it’s no surprise that more and more business leaders are incorporating BI platforms in their companies.
The push toward making data-driven decisions is nothing new. Now, though, business leaders have business intelligence and analytics platforms to make data-based decision-making more manageable than ever. These platforms gather data from multiple sources, bring that data together, and facilitate in-depth analysis. The result? Business leaders have better, more accurate insights they can use to make better decisions and guide their companies to success.
Currently, only around 26% of businesses worldwide are using BI tools. That number is expected to grow considerably in the coming years, though, with the BI market size projected to grow by almost double by 2030. That means companies that adopt this software now have the opportunity to get a jump on their competitors and stay ahead of the curve.
How to Implement BI and Analytics Platforms
So how do you implement BI and analytics platforms at your company? Like with any other software tool, it’s essential to have a plan for implementing your new BI platform. Follow these steps:
- Decide on a business intelligence strategy
Before you even select the BI tool you will use, take the time to develop a business intelligence strategy. Consider the answer to questions like:
- What tools do you already have in place?
- What data do you currently collect, and which teams are responsible for that data?
- Is there any additional data you want to collect and analyze?
- What are your main goals for using business intelligence software?
- How will you measure the success of your BI and analytics platform?
Your strategy should outline what you want to accomplish with your new BI tool and what your company will look like once implementation is complete. Set priorities on your most important goals for implementation and adjust your plans accordingly. By laying out a clear path from now to when you’ve implemented the software, the process will go much more smoothly.
- Choose the best software for your needs
Business intelligence is a broad software category, so you’ll have many options. The trick is finding the best BI tool, not in general, but for your company’s specific needs. Consider the features offered by each tool and how they align with your objectives for using BI software.
Compare different software products’ features, price points, and reviews. If necessary, request demos of products you’re particularly interested in to see how they work. It’s worth taking your time at this step to find the very best option for your company.
- Assign a team to oversee the implementation process
Business intelligence isn’t limited to the IT, marketing, or any other single team in your organization. More often, teams across the board are involved in using and maintaining BI tools. For that reason, you should put together an implementation team with representatives of all departments that will use the software. It’s important to hear each group’s viewpoints and unique insights on making implementation successful.
Even outside of the group you put together, make sure the rest of the company understands the benefits of using BI software. Sharing the benefits can mitigate some potential pushback to the change. And if other employees are going to use the software, plan to offer additional information or even training down the line.
- Break down the implementation process into phases
On its own, the process of implementing comprehensive software like a business intelligence and analytics platform is overwhelming. There are so many moving parts and departments involved that the project can quickly become daunting. Breaking this process down into phases makes it much more manageable. You’ll see tangible progress faster, too, which will give the team more motivation to keep pushing forward.
Once you break the process into some phases, schedule them according to your priority level. If a particular area of your business will benefit most from the software, for example, aim to get that area set up first. If certain phases are more complex, allot more time to complete them so you don’t get off track.
- Gradually roll out the software
Shifting from previous data analysis methods (if any) to using BI software can be a large adjustment. Rather than trying to shift the whole organization at once, roll out the software to individual departments. This way, you can collect feedback and see how everything works before expanding to the rest of the company.
As each individual roll-out is successful, word will spread across the company that the software is useful and worthwhile. Then, other departments will be more accepting and engaging during their own roll-outs.
- Make necessary adjustments
No software roll-out is perfect right from the moment you finish it. Even once you’re “done” implementing the BI software, you still need to reassess and adjust as issues arise. Be sure to check in regularly with all the stakeholders on the project.
Implementing a business intelligence and analytics platform can be tricky and time-consuming, but the results will be well worth that effort. Using BI software will help decision-makers at your company find actionable insights in your data and make more informed decisions. For a comprehensive business intelligence solution, turn to Live Earth. Contact us today to speak to the Live Earth team of data streaming experts about the value of business intelligence at your company.