From ‘Performance Management in the Midmarket’ by the Aberdeen Group…
During the current economic downturn, Businesses are feeling pressure to access, review, analyze and act upon events and information in order to become more agile as they work to meet day-today operational and financial performance goals.
They interviewed over 300 companies and identified their top pressures in this order:
- Lag times and inaccuracy of operational business decisions
- Need to understand operational performance drivers
- Poor executive visibility to the business
- Executive mandate to find operational efficiencies
- Need to improve customer intelligence
- Need to improve response to customer demand
- Increased cost due to operational inefficiencies
- Declining customer retention
This Week’s Topic – Poor executive visibility to the business
Poor visibility is caused by a lag time between actual business events and the ability for executives to receive information and performance-related analysis of the events in order to make timely, well-informed decisions.
This problem has launched an entire category of business called Business Intelligence.
Most businesses don’t get the information they want from their existing systems. Some ask IT to write a report while others create spreadsheets that let users do what they want, but at what price. Spreadsheets are inefficient and not completely reliable – you can have re-keying errors and calculation errors. There is no audit trail on changes so mistakes may not be detected. So, decisions are made with inaccurate information.
The solution is to make it easy for decision makers to access and analyze information anytime, anywhere. Up-to-date information needs to be available where people work, collaborate and make decisions.
The solution is also complex. Company information is hidden in many different data sources. It must be gathered, merged, formatted and presented to decision makers in a meaningful way.
The benefits of having access to company information, sophisticated analysis and ad hoc reporting is that you will empower employees to make better decisions faster. This should result in lower costs, increased revenues and improved customer relationships.
Has your company implemented a Business Intelligence solution? What has changed?