1. Get Valuable Insights into Your Business
Business intelligence software constantly collects and analyzes data to deliver actionable insights. Professionals can generate reports on a variety of data sets like expenses, operations processes, staffing and customer service with BI reporting.
There are numerous types of reports you can create using BI tools. All BI platforms will offer pre-formatted reporting capabilities that collect data for common KPIs. Businesses can also generate customized or self-service BI reports, applying BI’s excellent visuals to unique, organization-specific data sets.
Suppose neither of these options give you what you need. Instead, you can run an ad hoc report, which is put together entirely by users and usually focuses on a very specific KPI that other types of reports can’t target.
Another unique benefit of BI reports is information relevance. Because reports contain relevant data from your business operations, you can act with confidence. Plus, you don’t have to be a data scientist to use BI tools — the data visualizations these tools generate are easy to understand and explain.
In Select Hub’s survey of organizations in the market for BI software, 48% of buyers listed reporting as a desired feature.
Create reports in real time to monitor KPIs using different data sources, including customer, financial, operations and sales data. You can also access report templates that include easy-to-read visualizations like graphs, charts, tables and more. Interactive reports let you drill down deeper to fetch granular details and make informed decisions.
2. Visualize Important Information
Operational reports can be difficult to interpret, reducing an organization’s ability to recognize and act on key metrics. One of the key advantages of business intelligence software is its excellent data visualization capabilities that let you create intuitive, easy-to-digest visuals.
Charts, graphs, videos, animations and infographics are more engaging ways to transmit information than blocks of numbers or spreadsheets. This is partly because the human brain is hardwired to process cognitive information — information that takes more than a glance to interpret and digest — much slower than visual information. Of those surveyed in Select Hub’s survey, 81% of respondents expected visualization features from their BI platform.
3. Perform Data Mining
BI analytics tools are exceptionally well-suited for powerful data mining. Data mining is the process of seeking data patterns to identify trends and draw insights. It breaks down into five steps: collection, warehousing and storage, organization, analysis and presentation. Some BI platforms can perform all of these steps, although others require support from business analytics tools, big data analytics systems or data warehousing platforms.
BI analyzes, processes and renders vast amounts of data that are impossible to manage with weaker programs. It integrates with data warehousing solutions, in-house databases (e.g. SQL servers), as well as both structured and unstructured data. This strategy offers access to valuable information and enhanced decision-making processes that businesses might otherwise miss.
Because BI software can instantaneously analyze incoming data, it helps companies catch fleeting opportunities that they might otherwise miss. With the customizable reports produced by connecting BI to a data warehouse, companies can pick up on trends in company spending, staffing, operations, client development and more.
4. Establish Benchmarking
Fast thinking and effective decision-making are important in achieving success in a business endeavor. Often, those in charge of running a business don’t have time to conduct a large-scale research project or product release. Using business intelligence software is like constantly having an in-depth research project in progress that’s compiling information for groundbreaking decision-making.
Benchmarking is a valuable data analysis tool businesses use to gauge their productivity, revenue and overall success relative to their competitors. Organizations often struggle with benchmarking, but BI simplifies the process, providing actionable information and easy-to-understand reports. That’s why benchmarking is one of the core BI requirements users look for in a BI platform.
Benchmarking reports offer accurate, timely data that allow businesses to evaluate their performance against individual KPIs or trends over time, providing valuable insight into the organization’s current state. With predictive analytics capabilities, you can take these benchmarks and implement them proactively, getting ahead of the competition instead of chasing behind them.
5. Leverage Performance Management
BI tracks, manages and implements performance goals. With BI tools, businesses can input data-based goals such as sales goals or target delivery time, then track progress on a daily basis. This tracking mechanism is known as performance management, and it provides some of the most effective and easily implemented goal management available.
BI applications make information readily accessible that would ordinarily take hours or weeks to track down and organize. Business intelligence dashboards and real-time data allow you to organize important information and get moment-to-moment updates. It saves time and lets you deal with problems immediately.
With BI’s intuitive visual analytics capabilities, professionals can track goal fulfillment and use that information to gauge overall organizational productivity. When properly implemented, BI tools can boost your performance significantly.