Companies need to treat business intelligence (BI) software as a tool to help influence and guide their entire strategies, rather than solely as an IT project, according to research house Gartner.
In a report by analyst Patrick Meehan, entitled From Business Intelligence to Intelligent Business, he argued that the benefits of BI can be utilised at all levels to create possible future scenario models that can be applied across an organisation.
"Leading enterprises are establishing competency in aspects of BI such as decision modelling and support so that all workers, managers and executives can take the most effective action in a given business situation," he says in the report.
"The transformation is from a culture that simply demands more information to one in which asking the right questions taps a subset of information that drives impactful decisions."
On this issue of accessing and using information to drive decisions, he argued too that BI needed to be implemented to help firms answer specific questions relevant to their business and their strategies.
"Ultimately, a relentless focus on a very limited set of burning business questions will guide users towards BI-enabled decisions that have maximum impact on business strategies and goals," he said.
The report also noted that project teams should be set up to take advantage of the data being gathered from every department in order to ensure all data can be accessed by the relevant workers.
"Breaking down silos of data ownership will send information flows up and down management chains as well as across functions, driving maximum decision impact," he argues in the report.
"Unless business decisions exploit enterprise interdependencies in this manner, their impact will fall short. Maximally impactful business decisions never exist in isolation."
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