Business intelligence (BI) refers to the process, infrastructure, architecture, and technologies an organization uses to collect, store and analyze data to improve strategic business decisions and operational efficiency and gain a competitive advantage in the market.
Business intelligence combines historical and current data collected from internal systems and external sources. The process analyzes data generated from business systems to deliver meaningful and actionable information that improves strategic and tactical decision-making in the organization.
Business intelligence involves data mining, business analysis, performance evaluation, and data visualization to help the organization gather all the data that pertains to it and deliver it as easy-to-understand information.
What does a business intelligence consultant do?
A business intelligence consultant or BI consultant analyzes and interprets a company’s data to deliver actionable insights to business managers and leaders that will improve strategic decision-making and drive the company’s growth.
A company’s raw data refers to the data produced by the company. This data includes the company’s profits and losses, customer information, product performance, sales of products, employee and department productivity, and so on.
Raw data can be complex and challenging to apply. A business intelligence consultant analyzes, evaluates and transforms this data into meaningful and practical information that can improve overall business efficiency and increase business revenue.
Some of the duties of a business intelligence consultant are:
- Evaluating and assessing systems for effective data collection
- Using business intelligence tools and software to analyze data and produce reports
- Teaching employees how to interpret, assess and analyze data to improve overall efficiency
- Implementing new data collection systems and tools
- Recommending new business intelligence tools and systems that can improve the company’s strategic and tactical decision-making
- Delivering insights from data analysis to business executives and managers
- Giving reports on the business intelligence process and emphasizing how insights gathered help the company’s growth and productivity
Business Intelligence Tools
Carrying out business intelligence through data discovery and analysis was something only business intelligence professionals and expert analytics specialists could do. But with the development of data discovery tools and self-service business intelligence, executives, managers, and workers can carry out this process themselves.
Some examples of business intelligence tools are:
Business Intelligence Software
Some examples of business intelligence software are:
- Ad hoc analysis
- Online analytical processing (OLAP)
- Mobile BI
- Real-time BI
- Software-as-a-service BI
- Operational intelligence (OI)
- Open source BI (OSBI)
Business Intelligence Report
Business intelligence reporting uses a business intelligence tool to collect and analyze data to give meaningful and actionable insights that aid decision-making and improve the company’s growth.
The business intelligence report is produced after data collection, storage, and analysis have been carried out. The BI report refers to data transformed from raw business data into easy-to-interpret and applicable information that gives actionable insights.
Guidelines For An Effective Business Intelligence Report
A detailed and successful business intelligence report should go through the following procedures:
- Identify the needs of your clients.
Before starting a project, ensure you know all BI reporting requirements the stakeholders and executives are looking for.
- Analyze your data
Turn raw and inapplicable data into meaningful and actionable information and insights that will be easy for business executives, workers and stakeholders to understand.
- Ensure flexibility and scalability
Users can easily access and share data using a flexible and scalable architectural framework.
- Govern your data
With modern BI tools, users won’t have to go through the IT team to set up permissions since modern business intelligence tools have features that document all data sources and define who can take action on which data.
- Create data in an engaging way
Using business intelligence dashboards will help you compile and engagingly present data by taking advantage of data visualization tools.
- Implement new changes
You should be ready to adapt business intelligence reports to technological advances and changes in the needs of the business.
Business Intelligence Dashboards
A business intelligence dashboard is a business intelligence tool that employs data visualization to allow users to analyze and report on key performance indicators (KPIs) and other business metrics for a company.
A business intelligence dashboard contains data visualization elements such as graphs and charts that give business executives and stakeholders an easy-to-understand representation of key performance indicators of the business.
Business intelligence dashboards are user-friendly and flexible, allowing users to access and analyze data within the dashboard for more analysis.
Features Of A Business Intelligence Dashboard
Some of the features of a BI dashboard include the following:
- Customizable interface
- The ability to pull historical and real-time data
- Dashboard templates
Benefits Of A Business Intelligence Dashboard
A business intelligence dashboard helps businesses create meaningful insights that improve tactical decision-making, boost revenue and increase business growth.
Some benefits of a business intelligence dashboard are:
- It encourages improved decision-making in the business.
- It improves the strategic and tactical planning of the business.
- It makes complex business analytics metrics and data easy to understand for users.
- The insights give a business more competitive advantage over rivals.
- It helps a business identify market trends they can capitalize on.
- BI dashboards support more collaborative data analysis and information sharing between stakeholders.
Guidelines For A Business Intelligence Dashboard
Some guidelines to consider while creating a business intelligence dashboard include the following:
- Consider how easy it will be for the end users to understand the information detailed in the BI dashboard.
- Refine the design during development to create a comprehensive and practical plan.
- Present the right amount of information in your dashboard.
- Make sure that the data in your BI dashboard is up-to-date.
- Test the dashboard before presenting it to the end users.