BCS reveals 7 top tips for effective BI

Are you embarking on a new Business Intelligence (BI) strategy? Or looking to fine-tune? BCS, The Chartered Institute for IT reveals their top tips for BI…


With BI focus in place, the organised collection, mining and presentation of data can come together to create transformational member insight. The potential benefits of BI are multifaceted: accelerating and refining decision-making; strengthening internal business processes; optimising operational efficiency; seeking new revenue streams…we could go on. What’s more – if you evolve the process and invest in BI systems, this can help you to forecast potential problems that can be addressed and dealt with early on.


The Chartered Institute for IT (BCS) won the ‘Most Innovative Use of Data’ award in the 2017 memcom membership excellence awards and rightly so. Their investment in a solid BI strategy and system has enabled them to appreciate what members are actually saying and doing, create a data driven CRM program and actively reduce member churn rate in their organisation.


So we all appreciate the importance of BI. Need some pointers? BCS have built up a great deal of BI experience over the years and here are some top tips they’ve picked up along the way:


1. If you have the funds, invest in a good data warehouse and dashboard solution – don’t cut corners and it’ll save you time and money in the end. If your organisation would benefit from one system that consolidates all of your data into one, high performing place, a quality data warehouse is ideal. And the right dashboard will you give the space to discover the implicit meaning behind the data you’re analysing


2. BI will fail if the end-users aren’t comfortable with the technology or if they’re sceptical about working with it – therefore get buy in and training for all involved, including the key decision makers, from the onset


3. Set out clear business objectives to bring focus and clarity to what you are looking to do and why – ideally any BI objective should be an exercise to support an organisation goal


4. Don’t be a perfectionist with your reports – data and reports will naturally change and evolve over time so concentrate on getting the most important data out


5. Have an idea of what you actually want to know! Sounds silly as BI should help with this right? In BCS’s experience, it’s a great start to set out to prove some things you assume to be true. Because, in doing this, you then unlock the power that BI can have, often uncovering other learnings during the process


6. Ensure you have buy in from your IT department – make sure they are part of the planning process and ensure they are first to see the end results


7. Combine your findings with surveys and market data to create a full picture – if monitoring member engagement for example, what members say in surveys will be different from what they actually do and should be viewed together to fully understand the real picture

Thanks to Chris Fellowes, Head of Membership Marketingat BCS. Do you have any tips or learnings to supplement the insights from Chris? If so, please do comment below. We’d love to hear from you.

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