Monday, 11 October 2010

Five Ways to Turn Business Intelligence into a Competitive Advantage

Many companies regularly analyze their performance, but few have found ways to truly turn this exercise into a competitive advantage. Long and difficult reporting processes, short lead times, and the resource constraints often mean that the issues of the day get more priority. With SAP BusinessObjects Edge, you can streamline the reporting process and put business intelligence capabilities in the hands of your end users. This clears the way for more analysis and deeper detail, with insights you can use to get ahead in a competitive marketplace.
Here are five ways you can use SAP BusinessObjects Edge to turn business intelligence into a competitive advantage: 

1. Easy access and use: Business intelligence systems that are difficult to use and require large amounts of IT support are unlikely to be adopted, and they will put pressure on internal resources. This translates to a higher internal hurdle and, ultimately, lower ROI. Instead, select a solution that is designed with the end-user – in the business areas – in mind. 

2. Build an operation: Don’t treat every report request as ad hoc. You’ll see patterns in the needs of decision makers: use this to develop reports that can be automated and disseminated regularly. You and the recipients won’t have to think about the reports. Instead, you can think about the information they contain. 

3. Adjust your culture: Set the expectation for report input into strategic planning, execution, and monitoring. If people know that business intelligence reports will be coming from SAP BusinessObjects Edge – particularly through the automation of regular updates (see #2, above), they will be more likely to integrate them into planning cycles. Develop and automate post-execution reports for monitoring the performance of your corporate strategy, and company leadership will use them.

4. Always cite the data: Make it a habit to always check the data! When a question arises or debate over an opportunity occurs, provide a relevant report. Show what a strong business intelligence solution can do. After a while, business intelligence use will become ingrained in your company’s operations. 

5. Measure, monitor, and refine: Strategy doesn’t stop with execution. Use SAP BusinessObjects Edge to show the results of major investments and decisions that your company has made. These progress reports will provide a foundation for turning strategic planning into an ongoing discipline, which will put you ahead of your competitors. 

For more information on SAP BusinessObjects Edge visit:

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