15 AUGUST, 2022


What is business intelligence?

Business intelligence (BI) describes the strategies and technologies utilised by organisations to conduct data analysis and manage business information.

There are countless reasons why using business intelligence is necessary for today’s business climate. BI helps companies gain a competitive advantage by analysing and leveraging their data for business development, marketing and operational purposes.

What are the benefits of business intelligence in the workplace?

Technology is employed in almost every aspect of our lives in the modern world.

The corporate world has been particularly receptive to the changes brought about by digital advancements.

Business intelligence provides solutions for the modern workforce. Nowadays, an ever-increasing number of organisations have access to cutting-edge technologies and data-driven tools that provide them with the opportunity to learn more about themselves than ever before. This in turn allows businesses to adopt more flexible practices, embrace change and be proactive in their growth plans.

Examples of business intelligence solutions include:

Data sourcing and data mining

Data sourcing is the practice of extracting and integrating data from numerous internal and external sources. Meanwhile, data mining is the process of compiling and scanning large amounts of data in order to identify patterns.

Data analysis

Data analysis is the process of inspecting, cleaning and evaluating data. This information is then transformed into absorbable findings that can be used to inform key decisions involving workflow and business objectives.

Situation awareness

Situation awareness describes utilising real-time data to deduce what exactly is happening. This practice allows organisations to gain a clear oversight of on-the-ground events as they unfold and make quick, responsive decisions.

Decision support

A decision support system (DSS) is a computerised program that gathers, analyses and synthesises data. By condensing data into an in-depth report, a DSS provides organisations with analysis recommendations and predictions outlining potential outcomes. Organisations can utilise a DSS to test out hypotheses and determine areas of profitability.

Data communication and visualisation

Data visualisation is the practice of representing data through charts, graphs, diagrams and other infographics. Considered both an art and a science, data visualisation arranges the data in a format that is more engaging than sheer numbers. Data visualisation is closely related to data communication, as it allows data to be communicated in an interesting and intelligible format.

Six benefits of business intelligence

1. Why do we need business intelligence in the workplace?

Simply put: in order to know where you’re going, you first need to know where you are.

Business intelligence provides organisations with a clear and comprehensible overview of their current performance. When harnessed correctly, BI can influence all levels of an organisation by transforming abstract concepts into actionable, accurate insights. These insights allow an organisation to tailor its strategies and adopt greater control over its decision making processes.

Some of the most impactful benefits of business intelligence in the workplace include:

2. More accurate real-time reporting

Time is of the essence when it comes to important business decisions.
One of the main benefits of business intelligence is that it compensates for tight deadlines by automatically generating real-time information. This information can be seamlessly integrated into the decision making process.

With BI, businesses no longer have to reserve excessive blocks of time to comb through data, only for the data to be outdated by the time it’s legible. This quick turn around provides greater freedom for organisations, while also empowering employees to utilise data outside of specific decision-making contexts.

3. Make more informed business decisions

Real-time reporting enables businesses to fully mobilise the information they have at hand. This supports employees to make informed decisions that appropriately align the business’s goals with its current performance and climate.

4. Improve operational efficiency

Business intelligence can enhance operational efficiency at all levels of an organisation. Well-implemented BI tools grant everyone – regardless of their ability to code or read raw data – the ability to use data in their work. This provides everyone with the opportunity to take greater ownership for their performance, monitor KPIs and use data to identify areas for improvement.

5. Enhance customer satisfaction

Improving customer experience is more complicated than just responding to their actions. A fully-fledged CRM system will anticipate the needs and wants of a customer before they are aware of it themselves.

Business intelligence can directly contribute to improved customer experience and satisfaction. By allowing organisations to quickly identify trends and common customer behaviours, business intelligence can highlight and track areas of improvement. This deep level of insight helps employees respond to issues more efficiently.

6. Gain a competitive edge with a data-driven strategy

Implementing strategic decisions backed by responsive data plays a pivotal role in outperforming and outsmarting the competition.

Appreciating the bigger picture means organisations can more effectively harness industry trends, increase operational efficiency, identify sales opportunities and limit excessive costs.

What problems can business intelligence solve?

Business intelligence supports numerous risk management skills and practices amongst a workforce.

By interpreting real-time data, business intelligence can improve a diverse range of strategies. This will inevitably enhance the manner in which employees approach a variety of development, operational and marketing problems.

When employed successfully, the benefits of business intelligence can give rise to valuable growth opportunities by:

Discovering sources of revenue

Business intelligence provides organisations with the required tools to:

  • Gauge market demand and predict market movements
  • Pinpoint and eliminate internal inefficiencies
  • Test the outcome of various hypotheses to mitigate risks
  • Streamline operations to ensure maximum efficiency

Ultimately, a business that remains well-informed of its internal processes and external context can be more shrewd in its decisions-making processes.

Determining the ROI of a marketing strategy

Determining the ROI of a marketing strategy prior to its launch is a valuable risk management tool for businesses.

By harnessing historic and real-time data, business intelligence can more accurately estimate the predicted ROI of various marketing strategies. Data-driven marketing allows organisations to compare the performance of different strategies and pre-emptively determine the most profitable outcome.

Decrease risk of losing customers

With business intelligence, organisations can limit or even eliminate the ramifications associated with poor customer service.

Analysing purchasing trends with easy-to-digest data means that businesses can better understand and anticipate the needs of their customer base. Organisations that are proactive in their customer relations management can more effectively build customer loyalty and attract new customers.

Reduce high employee turnover

Implementing business intelligence contributes to the development of purposeful employee engagement and retention programs to reduce turnover.

Business intelligence can be applied to detect common patterns within your past and current workforce. Analysing resignation correlations or comparing the resignation rates across different demographics can help you to identify possible causes for employee turnover.

After determining turnover trends, your organisation can invest in workforce solutions that specifically address its unique problems. This will result in your organisation adopting a meaningful and productive retention strategy rather than a generic approach to encouraging employee engagement.

Start developing your organisation’s business intelligence skills

Business intelligence empowers organisations to make data-driven decisions. Regardless of their size or industry, all businesses can use business intelligence to capitalise on the diverse benefits associated with extracting value from raw data.

But business intelligence is not a fully automated process. In order to be implemented in a manner that motivates productivity rather than hinders it, business intelligence must be operated with a level of expertise. Cultivating business intelligence skills amongst your workforce promotes increased awareness of how to best utilise BI to generate useful information.

DeakinCo. offers a range of data-related learning solutions to teach individuals practical skills related to working with data in the context of their workplace. Discover how a tailored workplace solution can develop your employees with the workplace skills of tomorrow.

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