5 Tips for Creating a Strong Business Intelligence Strategy

Your business utilizes data every step of the way, from crafting impactful marketing strategies, learning about customer preferences, all the way to designing better, more effective solutions. Information is at the core of it all. Although you have different departments handling such information and research from their unique perspectives, the overarching concept of business intelligence is what unifies all that work under a single purpose. While most companies today are aware that it’s essential that they know how to collect, filter, analyze, and interpret their data, some are still quite behind on planning their very own BI strategy.

Business data and analytics represent one of the most vital aspects of all your decision-making, so naturally, these processes deserve their own dedicated strategy. Here, we’ll list a few core steps you need to keep in mind when you’re devising your own BI plan moving forward, to make the most of the information that is available to you, and to help your business grow.

Avoid data silos in your business

If your BI team works isolated from your, let’s say, marketing team and finance department – how can they ever use the intelligence collected and reviewed by your data experts? The productivity of your team depends heavily on their ability to collaborate across departments. 

Eliminating silos in your business will help your BI strategy reach its full potential. With access to the latest and most relevant BI, your individual teams and departments will be able to leverage the information at hand to be more efficient, productive, and engaged.

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Look at the big picture

Understandably so, businesses tend to use information to achieve immediate results. Whether they’re looking to attract more customers or to get rid of the product stock sitting in the warehouse, business intelligence helps your organization achieve just that. On a grander scale, BI serves to spot knowledge gaps in your organization when you’re not even aware you have them.

With the help of artificial intelligence and similarly advanced solutions, you have the opportunity to leverage your BI for more than just immediate gain. Automated, AI-based tools can seamlessly sift through swarms of information, filter what’s irrelevant, and discover long-term opportunities internally. 

Ensure optimal employee education

While most companies today do use a large number of diverse tools, most of which can be largely automated, the human factor in your BI strategy remains as pivotal as ever, if not even more so. Using Microsoft’s Power BI toolbox for better data research and analytics means that you need the right people who are qualified to handle such complex processes.

Make sure that your employees dealing with BI data reports and analytics have the right Power BI certification so that they can make the most of the available tools and the data they compile and analyze. Your data experts will then be able to help fuel all your other strategies in your business, from marketing to sales, in order to boost your success and competitiveness in your market.

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Determine the purpose and KPIs for your data

Thanks to our access to the online world, and your direct line of communication to your customers, data is literally at your fingertips. Before you can actually put it to any use in your own business, however, you need to make sure that you know how to recognize the relevant bits of information in a well of constantly accumulated business intelligence. Without the right parameters or key performance indicators, you cannot know if you’re on the right track.

Are you looking to use BI to boost revenue? Or are you perhaps looking to discover new avenues for expanding your organization, introducing new products or services, or new communication channels to reach your customers? In order to know whether or not you’re putting your BI to use, you need to have the right measurable KPIs to track within your strategy. 

Use smart BI analytics and visualization tools

Every day, technology is advancing so quickly that businesses today now have a wide array of solutions at their disposal that were once considered pure science fiction. With that in mind, you can look into different BI software solutions and tools that your employees can handle in order to make their work more purpose-driven and less time-consuming. 

For example, you can implement BI tools for data visualization that will put all that research and results into a new perspective. Presented visually, some of that available information can be transformed into presentations that can sway investors to help your business, or you can use them to keep educating your staff on the latest industry discoveries, emerging trends, and expected changes in customer behavior. 

In conclusion

A business intelligence strategy is by no means the be-all and end-all of your growth, but it can create the right level of stability for your finances while at the same time allowing you to make smarter predictions and forecast industry trends.  With that in mind, your approach to BI should be a structured, strategic one, based on the listed parameters and many more that are relevant to your business.

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Mike Johnston
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