Unintelligent Business

There’s a very common phrase being used within IT today.   It’s called Business Intelligence.   As a 20+ year IT professional it’s great to see IT projects have a platform like BI to demonstrate IT is not just about “technical” stuff.    The question I have is what will it take to deliver?     Can IT really provide Intelligence to our business community that gives them the insight to make considered, dynamic and even critical business decisions that they didn’t realise they could make?

For me, the art of providing real intelligence comes from abiding by a few guiding principles:

  1. If you don’t have a business problem then don’t start.   IT enables the solution it doesn’t identify the problem.
  2. Act like the consumer of the data.   If you wanted to increase revenue or find new markets, what would you want to know?   What do you see others do?
  3. Don’t ask for permission to be creative.   If you’re customer is not in IT don’t expect them to know what you can do for them – you need to feed their appetite with tasters of what solutions like Predictive & Advanced Analytics can do.   

Some of the pitfalls I’ve seen include starting the project before we even know what the business objective is.    Or the Business Intelligence project delivers a series of dashboards based on historical data – so it’s already out of date before the customer receives it!     It’s critical to understand why these pitfalls happen and how you can avoid them.   Leverage your own experiences, don’t be afraid to push back on your customer when you need to and most importantly of all, keep in mind that it’s “intelligence” you want to provide – forget about interpreting what already happened (anyone can do that) but leverage technology to see things before they happen!