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Diving Into BI: What Should CIOS Look For?

By CIOReview | Thursday, January 14, 2021

The journey of businesses towards higher profits gets a firm push when business decision-makers promote investment in business intelligence tools.

The challenge of maintaining consistent growth has driven businesses towards experimentations that are centered on business data. Discovering new avenues and rediscovering market potential while the business ecosystems evolve, require the use of business intelligence solutions. The integration of advanced technologies like AI and ML with data analytics applications enables companies to generate an extensive amount of key business insights. CIOs, being the technology leaders in business organizations, have a critical role to play in helping companies adopt the correct set of business intelligence tools. Business intelligence, when chosen carefully, empowers every department and every worker with the ability to make intelligence-backed business decisions that are more reliable and insightful. Considering the current technology and business trends, some crucial aspects that CIOs should check for in business intelligence solutions are listed below.

• Do Features Align Well with Business Models?

The intelligence requirements of firms vary depending on factors like the markets they cater to, the products and services they offer, and their future expansion plans. Carefully enlisting these factors enables companies to prioritize certain features in business intelligence solutions. An ideal BI solution must possess all the essential elements. The absence of even one capability deems the BI solution insufficient. CIOs should thus, look for solutions that align perfectly with the specific requirements of their firms.

• Does the BI Solution Support Self-Service? Self-service BI has been growing in significance over the last few years. These BI solutions differ from the others due to their ease of use. Designed with the motive of enabling every employee to make use of data, the BI solutions empower intelligent decision-making at all levels. Even a marketing professional is able to leverage analytics to ensure data-driven strategies. CIOs should look for advanced BI solutions that offer simple user interfaces and require minimum levels of data literacy to operate and understand them.

• Is Data Storytelling Effective?

The ability of BI tools to convert datasets into impactful points of information makes them indispensable for companies. However, not all vendors offer solutions that deliver compelling data storytelling. Ensuring that BI solutions contain the ability to present analyzed insights through visualizations and graphs is essential. These visualizations should enable an objective way of portraying relevant information. Without compromising on the richness of data, the BI tools must offer in a straightforward manner, contextual and insightful datastories using which companies can elucidate business plans and strategies.

• Is Data Centralization Prioritized?

Although the democratization of data is essential, data centralization is also critical from certain perspectives. While data storytelling and self-service BI are central to data democratization, well-designed dashboards and comprehensive reporting are the mainstays of data centralization. To promote the effective integration of data across organizations, CIOs must ensure that BI platforms offer powerful reporting capabilities that can present processed data in easy-to-decipher ways. The scope of intelligent business models increases significantly when data-driven insights are pooled together, creating a vast resource that workers can access.

• Is Real-time Analytics Supported? 

Advancement in technologies has rendered businesses into highly dynamic entities. This has made real-time capabilities very advantageous for companies. CIOs must look for BI solutions that support real-time visibility into business data across enterprises. The potential of analytics in determining the success of a business increases exponentially when systems have access to real-time information. From sophisticated data exploration to multi-dimensional reporting, the ideal BI tool should do it all with a significant degree of transparency and effortlessness.

CIOs can make a big difference to business performance by helping their companies adopt the most appropriate intelligence tools. With the increasing power of analytics, BI tools can make companies invincible