Studies have shown how important data is to a business. In today’s highly digitized world, access to data-driven tools and strategies has been widely opened, but not all organizations take advantage of it. Many business leaders believe that small organizations do not need to analyze their data, considering that business intelligence will not add a significant value to their business. This is a misleading perception because data is the key to relevant and useful decision-making for any type or size of business.
What is Business Intelligence
Business Intelligence (BI) is a concept that refers to a set of processes, architectures, and technologies that transform raw data into meaningful information. It is the integration of relevant and useful business information in an organization that encourages profitable business action. The term itself is not a specific ‘entity’, because BI is rather an umbrella term that covers all processes and methods of collecting, storing, and analyzing data from business activities by leveraging software and services. All of these things come together and transform data to create a comprehensive view of a business to help organizations make better, actionable decisions.
When implemented appropriately, BI will bring significant changes to strategic, tactical, and operational decisions within an organization. BI supports fact-based decision-making using historical data rather than mere assumptions and gut feelings. BI software will present the analyzed data in the form of reports, summaries, dashboards, graphs, charts, and maps. From the processed data, users can find detailed and real-time information about the state of the business.
Why Investing in Business Intelligence
Now you know what BI is and what it’s capable of, but what makes BI so important to modern-day organizations? Here’s the top reasons why BI is an intelligent business investment.
Quicker and improved decision making
The world of business changes very rapidly, with a new trend emerging every day. No wonder, business leaders need to make decisions as quickly as possible so as not to be left behind. Failure in responding to certain issues with accuracy and speed could lead to lost customers and revenue. With business intelligence assistance, organizations can leverage existing data to identify areas of opportunity and quickly seize them before competitors.
Valuable customer insights
Customer feedback is important to retain customers while attracting new ones. BI software helps companies gain valuable customer insights that can be used to identify buying patterns or shopping experiences. By keeping track of data about your customers, BI allows you to interact better with them so you can identify solutions to any issues, retain and attract customers, as well as reaching potential clients with targeted messages to increase sales.
Raw data will not contribute to business growth until it is analyzed and processed. Effective BI system allows its users to identify key organizational trends that can be used to modify or implement strategic plans. Through comprehensive analysis of data, you can understand the interconnections between different functions and facets of your business. In the end, you can make informed decisions and act accordingly.
Smart planning and budgeting is a powerful way to stay ahead of the business competition. And you can do this with BI software. You can also track competitor’s sales and marketing performance. By gaining insight on what your competitors are doing, you can learn how to differentiate products and services of your own.
Marketing and sales growth
Gathering important data helps you understand exactly what the customer needs from your brand. BI helps find good opportunities and practices from analyzing the data. By evaluating collected information, companies can implement improvements that will directly reflect on marketing and sales.
Visibility is essential for organizational growth. If you want to have better control over important processes in the organization, investing in a good BI system could be the key. BI makes it easier to see each component part of your business in details, even those that are often overlooked. As a result, you can more easily spot areas that need improvement and make necessary changes.
Does Your Business Need Business Intelligence?
We live in an age of big data. With organizations generating, collecting, and storing data on a daily basis, data becomes the new currency in business. Not relying on data for good use will be an expensive burden for an organization. BI helps companies establish trusted and verified data analytics in an optimized and automatic way that can provide meaningful and accurate information to end-users, allowing them to make better informed and more timely business decisions.
The common perception that BI is only of any use to large companies is not necessarily correct. If you run a small business, simple business intelligence systems can be of great help to your decision-making as well. For example, you can decide what the best opening hours are, or what day of the week is best to take off from the data analysis.
The most important thing is that an analysis of key data eliminates the guesswork from business by assessing actionable solutions to complex problems instead of relying on assumptions or gut instincts. You can make your business processes leaner and more efficient at every stage with this scientific revolution. After all, when your company’s future is at stake, would you rather trust a manager’s gut feeling, or a comprehensive set of statistical data that can analyze past trends and predict future results?