Reports are a necessary part of any organization. Without the data from reports, you would have no specific information about how your business is performing financially, operationally, or otherwise.
Business intelligence (BI) tends to be more of an idea or process. Ultimately, BI is the practice of using organized, governed data to get the right information, to the right people, at the right time so you can see trends, predict future outcomes, capitalize on realized opportunities, and drive business forward.
Last year I wrote an article addressing the differences between reporting and BI. Within that editorial, I brought the topic to life in a pre-recorded webinar. Today we’re going a step further to uncover the top three signs that it’s time for company to move from reporting exclusively, to adding BI.
Sign #1- Your team is arriving at different numbers, from different departments, for the same report.
How can this happen? Well, the main reason would be various people pulling information from different places. With the unlimited areas that data lives within an ERP, how do you know you’re looking at the right numbers?
A BI solution minimizes the guesswork, which allows you to go from “I think” to “I know.” It produces accurate reports and dashboards every time by extracting data from a governed data warehouse that has pre-calculated and combined all your sources of information – meaning that everyone is working from one version of the truth. BI not only performs fast and clear analysis of any amount of data, it resolves tasks such as creating structural plans, distributing and collecting information from different business units or teams, and consolidations, seamlessly. You never compromise report integrity again.
Sign #2- You’re upgrading or migrating to a new ERP system.
Upgrading to a newer version of Microsoft Dynamics? Most companies have over 100 reports that need to be upgraded, too. In addition, you likely have hundreds of thousands of transactional records that need to be migrated for historical reporting purposes. Combined, this will likely make up the highest costs in your upgrade, and take the most time. But it’s not, if you have BI. You eliminate both.
With a data warehouse built for Microsoft Dynamics, like the one delivered with Jet Enterprise, you won’t have to pay to update the 100+ reports in the new system, it’s done automatically. As a bonus, you end up nearly tripling the benefit of your ERP upgrade with the investment of a BI solution because you also use it for transactional data migration. The data warehouse will store all your historical transactions, cutting upgrade costs as much as 80% in some cases. This allows you to increase the productivity of your Dynamics investment by gaining fast, accurate analysis for everyone who needs it. Better yet, the return continues as you move through subsequent upgrades down the road.
Sign #3- You need to consolidate.
For many companies, two ERP systems are a by-product of past mergers or acquisitions. They can also be the result of functional strengths – financial business management versus production tracking, for instance. Managing multiple ERP systems can be challenging, especially as your business grows. By implementing a BI solution, business users are able to pull the data they need from both systems, but out of a single repository. You can quickly extract data from all company sources, and specify a set of rules to transform the data, and do so in a simple drag-and-drop interface. Any solid BI solution with a clean, intuitive user interface, such as Jet Enterprise, will allow business users to build their own reports, as well as have the flexibility to add or tweak any BI dashboard, from virtually unlimited databases, seamlessly. In other words, you can eliminate the question on where you get what data, and how.
By implementing BI, all the information is centralized and can be viewed in a dashboard or turned into a report, saving you enormous amounts of time while eliminating inefficiencies. You don’t need to be a large company to benefit from BI either. Start your BI journey now and find out how you can take your business the next level, today!