Top 5 signs your company needs Business Intelligence

Implementing Business Intelligence solutions, namely Microsoft’s Power BI, is one of our most requested services (which helps explain the suite of products we ended up developing around this tool).

Companies often decide to implement Power BI to overcome an organizational problem or get a leg up on competition, but over the years we noticed a series of patterns that kept popping up whenever a company got in touch with us.

Here are the 5 most common signs that indicate your company needs a Business Intelligence solution:

You have lots of data, but not much information

Since pretty much everything leaves a digital footprint, collecting data is quite easy. However, what good does a lot of data do when you aren’t able to extract any information from it? Data and information may be close, but they are not interchangeable terms: data is but a raw material that must be treated and applied to a context, resulting in information.

SPAR's store performance report on Power BI
SPAR’s store performance report on Power BI

If your company is sitting on a pile of data that keeps growing at a pace you can’t possibly keep up with you need to adopt a Business Intelligence tool such as Microsoft’s Power BI. A ton of raw data isn’t any good if you can’t use it to identify problems and trends and extract business insights.

Your company is using Excel for everything

If you read any of our BI team’s case studies, you’ll notice that prior to the implementation of Power BI, Excel reigned supreme on pretty much every company that contacted us. It’s understandable though: Excel is an excellent data storage tool and has been around for decades, so most people have worked in it all their lives. Excel is very flexible, and its scalability looks limitless, but in a growing business, data will quickly burden it to the point of becoming too slow to handle it properly.

But throwing at Excel more than it can handle is far from the biggest offense. A recurring situation involves multiple people making manual edits to the same file and sharing it with colleagues, completely losing track of changes and accuracy. Like in the previous sign, a central business intelligence solution updates data for everyone at the same time and, with a few scaling solutions, it can be automatically inserted in your BI model.

You’re individually handling multiple data sources

Usually, the larger the business, the higher the number of data sources it uses. This is not a problem in itself but becomes one when there isn’t a centralized way to extract, transform and load the provided raw data. IT staff is well aware of it since the alternative is burdensome hours of manually going through each database in order to extract some information. However, because multiple sources mean multiple systems, the complexity of joining data can seem daunting and put many people off.

If your employees are handling multiple data sources individually, they’re making an unnecessary effort doing something that, most likely, won’t get you the same results you would if you used a business intelligence tool instead. Besides being a huge waste of time and resources, it has a demoralizing effect on employees.

SPAR Cloud Services with Azure and Power BI
Power BI can centralize multiple data sources
You’re making decisions based on your gut

Psychologists found that gut-based decisions can be surprisingly accurate, but they will never be as precise as those backed by data. Decisions can make or break a business, and resorting to uneducated guesses is taking a huge gamble, regardless of anyone’s track record.

Dynamic Business Intelligence reports allow you to control how you analyze your data by adding, changing and filtering your information. Back your decisions with data because your gut can only be right so many times.

Competition seems to always be one step ahead of you

Perhaps the most worrying sign that you really need a Business Intelligence solution is noticing competitors performing better than you. The adoption of smarter analytics can produce effects on the market almost immediately, and a well-implemented solution can include metrics that allow you to study your competitor’s activity and act on it.

Without clear insights, your business will simply be shooting in the dark.

So, what can you do?

Any company, regardless of size, can adopt a business analytics solution such as Power BI and scale it according to their budget. If you wish to learn how our team can integrate it into your business, send us an email to bi@devscope.net.

To see some of our Power BI solutions in action, check out the work we did for Candando and SPAR.

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