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Don’t think you need to go it alone when using your data to make crucial business decisions.

Nobody who has experienced the power of business intelligence (BI) done well, doubts its potential to transform a business. However, getting started and then effectively utilising the information can be overwhelming, complex and most notably time-consuming.

This is where engaging a business intelligence expert to guide you through the options and process can be a worthwhile investment to ensure the success of your project.

An experienced business intelligence consultant will tell you that 80 per cent of the work starts with the planning and assessing of your unique data – known as the Foundation Stage. The remaining 20 per cent is spent choosing and setting up your BI tool (e.g. Qlik, Power BI, Yellowfin BI, Tableau) to present and communicate your data – known as the Visualisation Stage.

A good foundation is the greatest factor in determining the success of your project but is often overlooked or not well understood. Often resulting in business professionals finding themselves jumping ahead and missing a crucial steps.

When engaging your BI consultant they should guide you through three key steps to ensure you get the most of out each stage in the process:

1. Business Review

This is a crucial step where all stakeholders are consulted and asked the right questions to define the specific problems that need to be solved. From here they can develop correct reporting requirements and plan for the next step.

2. Data Structuring

In this step they present solutions to collect, prepare and organise your data to eventually deliver relevant reports as defined in the business review.

3. Business Intelligence platform

Finally you are ready to choose your BI platform. You will now be creating the right reports and dashboards to suit your business based on the information gathered during the Foundation Stage. It means the BI platform can essentially just be the presentation layer for the work already done.

Speaking to the experts and learning from their experience can help you make the right choices for your business. Experts in the foundation and visualisation stages of BI projects can guide you through the entire process and ensure the solution achieve your ultimate goal – making informed business decisions!

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