Organizations choosing to purchase and implement a business intelligence (BI) solution realize the value it can bring to their daily operations and future planning. This level of strategic investment requires a substantial commitment from the responsible teams to carefully plan, implement and enforce user adoption across the company to ensure the anticipated value is realized.
IT leaders are perfectly positioned to drive the success of this type of endeavor. With knowledge of existing systems and how they’re set up, IT leaders are typically the best qualified to engage in the initial design and implementation of the new BI tool to ensure all the needed systems are appropriately integrated. After set-up, working cross-departmentally to kick-off new projects, establishing testing procedures and analyzing initial reports for accuracy is essential. There are four key aspects to consider as a leader of a new BI initiative.
Build a strategy – own the responsibility of establishing an agreed-upon company strategy. Consider all possible uses and then lead a discussion on prioritization. Start with only a few projects so that you can monitor them closely to ensure success. You can add other projects once the team is more familiar with BI operations. Be sure to clearly determine measurable goals and objectives, so everyone sees the purpose of using your new solution. Don’t make the mistake of changing your company processes to suit your BI tool, as this may create employee reluctance to use the system. Instead, set up your BI tool to work with your existing processes.
Become the internal BI champion and collaborate with other departments to understand their goals and objectives for using the tool. Treat this project as a company-wide initiative vs. an IT project, and help your peers set up their analyses, reports, and dashboards. Share your expertise and stay in regular communication. Track progress on individual projects that were identified before the purchase to ensure the company is gaining the value intended. Build trust gradually by showing proof over time and don’t allow for renegades to skirt the new processes.
Lead training and user adoption not just within the IT department but within all departments. IT leaders are often looked at as the knowledge experts on a new BI system, so take advantage of this perception and become the expert. Own the responsibility to roll out full training across the company and create a small team within IT to act as the company’s BI resource for questions and assistance.
Track ROI based on predetermined objectives. As the champion of the overall BI project, you will want to ensure your stakeholders have the ability, and are taking the time, to track the results available from their new reports and dashboards. Be sure they know how to identify the time savings and cost savings achieved as a result of the BI solution.
A well-implemented BI project can lead to dramatic results, positioning those IT leaders that take control as invaluable to their organization. If you’re looking for a tool that can help uncover the hidden information in your business, take a look at how ClicData turns complex information into simple dashboards to help keep track of your business health and turns a BI investment into a bottom line profit.