Whilst there has been a long standing agreement that business intelligence is defined from the top of a business down with policies being defined by managers, executives and key decision makers and then cascaded down throughout the business, there has been a swing in recent years to suggest that a bottom ups approach can work equally well. Many current experts are saying that small changes to a business outlook can result in a longer-lasting benefit to the business strategy as well as providing morale and financial benefits.
To fully ensure that the business intelligence solution will provide results, a proper plan is needed to be put in place and this starts with proper assessment and gap analysis of the internal systems of the business. There is a strong need to identify the current structure and the weaknesses associated with the business in its current form before any meaningful suggestion for change can take place.
Once the assessment has taken place, the vision and planning of the restructuring can take place which segues into the decision making process where the options are considered and the relative merits of the various business intelligence solutions are compared before the implementation and execution stage can take place. This is where the overall strategy and change takes place and the final stage of any business activity must always revolve around a follow-up analysis and fine-tuning of any changes made.
Sometimes these changes clearly indicate an in-depth process that requires an intensive and all-encompassing approach that may be too much for one organization to undertake whilst retaining their own business focus.
In those cases, business intelligence solutions are better undertaken by an external body or advisor as they will have no personal attachment to the organization and can bring a wealth of experience of this type of decision making.
If this approach appeals to you and a synopsis of your organizations direction would be of benefit then it would be recommended to try out an external supplier who often have different versions of a checkup program to gauge the operational fitness and status of your organization.
If this project is internally led, this checkup can identify the key areas that they need develop and to learn where there is scope for future strategies and potential risks to the organization. At the completion of the checkup, the company will have created a tiered list of priorities that is tailored to providing insight and direction to their history, value and direction.
When everything is going well in an organization it can be easy for the firm to be oblivious to any problems but far more worrying is the tendency for firms to bury their head in the sand when things are going wrong. When change is needed and proper Business intelligence solutions, clear decision and analysis is required, the truly innovative firm will take action.
Copyright Gary W Patterson 2008
Gary W. Patterson, FiscalDoctor, has advised over 200 companies across traditional and emerging industries to help improve profitability, reengineer business models, and strengthen or gain competitive advantage in the marketplace. http://www.FiscalDoctor.com or blog, http://www.FiscalClinic.com