Want to grow your organisation faster and make better decisions?In this article, learn how to align BI with your goals, choose the right technology and make a significant impact with small steps. Also, discover how to set up a sustainable data model and use data for multiple purposes. With these 11 tips, you can grow your business and reach your goals faster.
Align Business Intelligence with your challenges and opportunities.
Do you have growth objectives within your organisation?
Aligning your Business Intelligence with these objectives is essential to get the most out of BI. With Business Intelligence, you can achieve your business objectives faster, easier and more efficiently.
Objectives can be:
- Double sales
- Increase turnover or margin by xx euros per year
- Increase customer satisfaction compared to the competition by xx%
Choose the right technology and go for quality. (But pay less than the top dollar!)
The choice is vast. How do you choose the tools that best suit your organisation?
There are countless tools in Business Intelligence. Technology X can cost many times more than Technology Y.
Therefore, pay attention to the following:
- The size of the organisation and the number of users;
- The amount of data;
- The possible integrations of the tooling with the web or other systems;
- The type of insights you want to generate (dashboarding/modelling);
- The budget you want to spend in the coming years to achieve your goals using BI.
It is, therefore, only sometimes necessary to go for the most expensive solution; tailoring the tools to your needs is vital for an excellent price-quality ratio.
Start small: Pick what you can achieve quickly and with significant impact.
It is often difficult to start and create an impact immediately. With this method, you usually succeed and immediately reap the benefits of BI:
- Determine with your management which objectives are most important to achieve;
- Determine the impact of each objective and how much effort it will take to implement them;
- Pick up the items that have a high impact but require relatively little effort.
Such points can range from understanding staff costs to automating sales processes. Pick a few moments so that the benefits of BI are quickly visible in the organisation.
Think big: Generate a long-term view of data.
Think about what is needed now and in the future. How important is data to your operations? And how can you align that data with your long-term vision?
A good data strategy can give you a competitive advantage if you develop good Business Intelligence. Using Machine Learning and AI to improve processes.
A generic direction can often be enough, for example:
- I want to understand my business operations using better insights;
- I want to automate business processes;
- I want to enrich the data in my business to make sure my sales are better.
But it may also be more specific:
- I want maximum automation and a solid competitive advantage by combining insights into my business operations with internal and external data.
Make cross-references between different types of data.
Do you have insight into why your business is doing so well? Or where the pain points are?
It is interesting to provide insight into your finances, but it is even more interesting to see which products and customers are responsible for the growth of your business. You do this by making cross-references between financial, product, and customer data. This is how you create an integral picture of your business operations
The most critical cross-links are:
- Products and financials –> product improvement (financial)
- Customer base and customer behaviour –> improving customer satisfaction
- Customer satisfaction and products used –> product improvement
By cross-linking, you learn to engage in developing better products, experience how to make customers more satisfied through intelligent adjustments, and how design business processes to get the most out of them for your business.
This data source can be the CRM system, the ERP system, your accounting programme or your website. Combining data improves your operations.
Ensure a sustainable data model.
Have you ever thought about a suitable data model for your business? So that you can keep scaling Business Intelligence?
It must be sustainable so you are continuously provided with fast and correct insights. Not only now but also in the future. So you can build a data model that you can use for your analyses.
Create several necessary tables, for example, Customers Financial Sales Product & pricing Web. Determine a unique identifier so you can link all the data together; Use the data for analysis, automation and predictive modelling.
Use data for multiple purposes.
Business intelligence? That’s just a collection of dashboards, right? But with BI, you can generate insights, streamline processes, and provide the right customer experience.
You can do much more with data than make a nice graph appear. It can help you in many ways:
- Automatically send messages to your employees to contact a customer if they are dissatisfied (or if they are satisfied);
- Give a sales rep a task to contact a lead;
- Automate your customer administration further so your service staff can focus on the customer.
The possibilities are endless, so think carefully about the critical pain points your business needs to solve.
Automate where possible.Do you also have a team with too many administration tasks, leaving too little time to spend on the customer?If your employees have a high workload due to an inefficient work process, that’s one of the things you can solve quickly, depending on the complexity.Business intelligence can help your people focus on the customer and the business rather than the internal processes.
Establish a relationship between your revenue drivers and margin drivers.
Are you a financial professional and need to plan for the long term? Setting up an investment round? Substantiate revenues and your margins with actuals from the drivers.
- Revenues are driven by the products sold.
- Margins are driven by the margins per product and the mix of products.
- Your customers and customer mix drive the number of products you sell.
- The number of customers you bring in is driven by your sales funnel.
By understanding these four processes, you can better set up your long-term planning and convince investors faster that investment pays off.
Establish a relationship between customer satisfaction, product and pricing.
As a commercial professional, do you also feel that sales opportunities and product improvements are possible? But don’t know where?
Connecting customer satisfaction, product and pricing gives you good insights into where sales opportunities and product and pricing improvements lie.
Everyone wants satisfied customers, the right products and the right price. By gaining insights across these axes, you can better align your portfolio with the customer, positively influencing your satisfaction, sales and margins.
Where possible, combine internal data with external data.
Do you want to outperform your competitor? Would you like to reach more leads? Then enriching your data is a good step.
Data enrichment is widely used. Much information is on the market, purchased or taken from the web. Understanding competitors or enhancing your lead data quickly leads to improved sales or improved business choices.
Some external data sources we recommend are:
Lead scoring data: improving sales. Competitive benchmarking data: building competitive advantage. Market data: putting company performance in the context of the market.