The BI Functions & Features comprise the following elements:
Analytics 5 function and featuresMajor modules covered Predictive Analytics;Data, Text, and Web Mining;OLAP;Core Analytics;Administration;. Analytics, BI Functions & Features
Data Integration 2 function and featuresFunctionality below includes ETL;EII;. Data Integration, BI Functions & Features
Data Warehousing 2 function and featuresMajor modules below include Data Warehouse Functions;Product Support;. Data Warehousing, BI Functions & Features
Reporting and Analysis 5 function and featuresModules covered Reporting;Analysis;Enterprise Search;Scorecards;Dashboards;. Reporting and Analysis, BI Functions & Features
Support 7 function and featuresFeatures and functions below include Server Support;Client Support;Database Support;Portal Support;Web Service Support;Problem Resolution;. Support, BI Functions & Features
Workflow 9 function and featuresWorkflow is a commonly used term that describes the automation of internal business operations, tasks, and transactions that simplify and streamline current business processes. Workflow, BI Functions & Features
BENEFITS OF BI FUNCTIONS AND FEATURES
You can use the list of functions and features for Business Intelligence (BI) software to generate the components of the Request for Proposal (RFP) you will send to BI vendors to solicit a proposal:
- the business, functional, and technical BI requirements you will layer in the Work Breakdown Structure (WBS) as part of the Statement of Work (SOW)
- the weighted BI evaluation criteria you will used to evaluate and compare BI proposals, and then select the best BI system for your needs
The list of BI requirements will also help you build decision-support tools that rationalize hence facilitate your decision-making process:
- the BI compliance matrix that will allow you to deem a BI vendor responsible and a BI proposal responsive
- the BI decision matrix that will help you identify and select the best BI system
BI software functions and features are used in the WBS to
- delineate the scope of work, namely the implementation of BI best practices as the business processes underlying strategy development, value creation, multi-channel integration, information management, and performance assessment
- make sure BI vendors and their customer communicate on the same grounds for the sake of the project success and avoid finger pointing in case of issues
- track and report the implementation progress to the BI acquisition project stakeholders
- be used as an insight at each step of the BI software selection process
BENEFITS OF BI SYSTEMS
The main benefits, motivations, and justifications of acquiring a BI system are:
- make decisions right—remove or mitigate the uncertainty and bias of the business decision-making process by using the right data, methods, and tools
- make right decisions—no more business gambling but impartial and informed decisions
- make decisions quicker—swift access to accurate, insightful information on your past, recent, current, and predicted business activities
- make decisions anywhere and any time—spatiotemporal ubiquity of information, get the information wherever and whenever it is needed
- streamlined operations—BI helps remove information silos across the organization, hence, even if it fails at dropping walls, it builds bridges between departments by making the information available to whoever needs it from whoever produces it (shortened information leadtime between production and consumption)
It is also worth noting that BI software can help the company
- determine the real costs of manufacturing and production
- better manage inventory
- identify issues and defects faster
- reduce manual labor by automating data entry, collection, processing, and reporting
- more efficiently identify customers who are the best candidates to up-sell and cross-sell
- deliver the right information to the right person (information personalization)
- gain and share valuable and actionable insight into customers and their behaviour
- continuously improve both operational and support processes, in conformance to process improvement approaches, frameworks, and standards like Quality Management (PDCA, 6-Sigma), Agility, Lean, CObIT, CMMI, and ISO-IEC (9000 Series and 15504)
Such benefits of BI systems improve financial key performance indicators (balance sheet, income statement, financial ratios, stock price) but also provide such less tangible effects as a higher sense of belonging in and of commitment to the company because employees are given all the information needed to increase and see the effect of their actions on a daily basis.
HOW TO SELECT BI SOFTWARE
Selecting BI software is a decision-making process of several steps. First, the decision maker needs to identify the ins and outs of the business problem to be solved. Once the problem circumscribed, the decision maker builds the space of potential BI solutions, evaluates the capability of each BI solution to address the problem, then compares them side-by-side to finally identify the BI solution that best addresses the problem.
Herbert A. Simon (1916-2001), a pioneer in the field of artificial intelligence (AI) and recipient of the 1978 Nobel Prize in Economics, has formalized this process by inferring it from his studies of how decisions were made in business organizations:
Intelligence: What Is The Problem?
The first step of Simon's IDC rational decision-making process consists of identifying the problem that is at the root of the decision to buy, replace, or upgrade an BI system.
To do so, obtain clear information about the organization's current business processes and problems related to them. Then devise processes the way you would them to work. Based on that information, perform a gap analysis between both current and desired processes, which will allow you to create a list of BI software requirements (BI functions and features). Finally, weigh the identified BI software requirements based on your organization's strategic, business, functional, and technical priorities (from not relevant to critical)
Design: What Are The Different ERP Solutions?
The second step of Simon's IDC rational decision-making process consists of building the space of BI solutions. Only BI software solutions that are deemed responsive enough in regard to the BI software requirements specification devised in step 1 will be part of your BI solutions space.
To do so, identify potential BI software vendors and their solution by using the list of BI software vendors in the BI Software Comparison Report that was already built by our BI consultants and BI analysts using TEC Advisor, our online Decision-Support System (DSS). You may also complement it with BI software vendors you are already aware of or met at an BI trade show.
Then determine which BI software vendors are likely to provide a solution by meeting the BI software requirements specification developed in step 1.
Finally, disregard all BI solutions which ratings don't meet the priority threshold you assigned to criteria that you deemed critical. The remaining solutions will constitute your shortlist of BI software solutions. You usually end up with a "Top 10 BI Systems" or "Top 3 BI Systems" depending of the complexity of your acquisition project.
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Choice: What Is The Best BI Solution?
The third and last step of Simon's IDC rational decision-making process consists of identifying the solution that bests fit your business, functional, and technical needs set forth in the BI software requirement specification.
To do so, compare shortlisted BI software solutions side-by-side by identifying all the differences between shortlisted BI solutions in terms of coverage of your needs and based on your priorities. This is a very complex task that is not humanly manageable because of the high number of evaluation criteria to take into consideration amplified by the number of BI solutions considered.
To help decision makers select the best BI solution, Decision-Support Systems (DSS) like TEC Advisor assist buyers in seeking the BI solution that maximizes the expected utility (UE). Such tools use advanced mathematical analysis based on what-if scenarii and sensitivity analysis, to name but a few techniques.
So a Decision-Support System (DSS) like TEC Advisor is here to help you speed up the decision cycle, lower the global project cost, alleviate your pain, and secure your decision-maker position by handling the mathematical complexity of the decision and giving you all the tools necessary to make a rational, impartial, and traceable decision.
Use TEC Advisor To Select The Best ERP Software For Your Needs!