The Role of Business Intelligence in Performance Optimization

MX Bites / May 30, 2024

A small business operating in a new market improves its performance with business intelligence insights after several records of losses. In just six months of establishment, it had become unstable due to the losses, having missed numerous sales opportunities, and the inability to take advantage of aha moments in marketing. What changed for this business was the integration of BI systems into their operations. They collected data from sales records, customer feedback, and the supply chain in real time, analyzing them and observing the change in patterns of customer behavior with respect to seasons using BI tools. Then, they were equipped with insights on how to project their products to customers in different seasons to avoid loss of resources and increase revenue progressively.

The company, after then, understood when to overstock the store, when to get products at cheaper rates to sell to their customers when demand exceeds supply, and how to tailor product development to customer preferences. This new development helped them maximize their resources, improve their customer experience, and increase their number of loyal customers.

This case study shows that the market is totally unpredictable—at least within the short term. Even market research experts rely on market research tools to get a better grasp of the market, collecting customer data in real time for analysis and decision-making. Hence, there is a strong reliance on business intelligence at this time to mitigate risk and enhance growth. 

How Business Intelligence Aids Performance Optimization

An increase in annual revenue is one of the indicators of good business performance; however, it goes beyond that. What if your business is meant to improve by 30% in revenue annually, but it’s still at the level of a 15% increase per year? Though this might be a great improvement for your business, it is still not at its maximum performance. Therefore, the role of BI in performance optimization is to help businesses operate at their maximum capacity by providing high-level insights for decision-making. It proves that any business can perform better than it is currently doing; all it needs is the right insight plus strategic planning.

These bullet points break down the role of business intelligence in performance optimization:

    • Strategic planning: The success of business operations depends on the strength of the business plan. This implies that a failed business started with the wrong plan. Therefore, the integration of business intelligence into a business plan helps to mitigate risk and improve business outcomes. Using historical data and trend analysis, BI tools can help your business set strategic business goals, predict future performance, and develop long-term strategies for sustainability and exponential improvement.
    • Customer Insights: You barely have the chance to know your customers on a personal level, not to mention being able to predict their preferences or decisions in the coming years. However, you need to understand their behavior and predict their preferences in order to improve your customer experience and keep them coming back. This is why BI tools cannot be ignored in any business setting. They provide thorough analysis of the customers, using real-time feedback, to predict customer behavior, increase customer satisfaction, and nurture the relationship for a long time.
    • Sales and marketing: Approaching a market to make sales has to come from an accurate foresight of the market. There are so many businesses that have invested huge amounts of money in ads and marketing campaigns, only to yield little or no result and waste resources in the end. This is due to the fact that they approached the market with a vague understanding of their target market, so they lost them in the process. Using business intelligence tools before scheduling campaigns or selling to a market saves so much stress. It gives you foresight into the market and what their response could be to your sales strategy. 
    • Human resources: In performance improvement of a company, the employees are not left out. BI tools help in providing insights into how to improve employee satisfaction, predicting employee turnover rates, and optimizing the performance of each employee in the company. 
Steps to Implementing BI for Performance Optimization

The following are steps that help you implement BI to improve your business and make it perform at its maximum peak.

  1. Identify the key performance indicators (KPIs): How do you measure success as a business? Is it by revenue increase, customer satisfaction score, or net promoter score? Identify them. These metrics will guide your BI efforts and help you measure success. 
  2. Collect and integrate data: Collect customer feedback in real time, get historical data from a data warehouse, and integrate it into a centralized BI system. 
  3. Choose the right BI tool: Many BI tools have been developed to aid performance optimization, some of which include Tableau, which is the most common, Power BI, Domo, IBM cognos analysis, etc. You can choose any of them according to your organizational needs. However, while these might be too expensive, our business intelligence tools stand to be more affordable for businesses that want to access quality business intelligence tools. 
  4. Create dashboards and reports: After choosing a tool that fits your intended purpose, use the tool to design an intuitive and interactive dashboard that provides insights into your key metrics. It’s advisable to make this dashboard accessible to users at different levels. Train your employees on how to interact with the dashboard and extract insight from it, so they can use these insights to improve their performance collectively.
  5. Monitor and review performance for continuous improvement. The dashboard is meant to help you know where you are according to your KPIs and provide insights on the necessary improvements to make. Therefore, closely monitor the KPIs and use insights gotten from the dashboard to make improvements in decision-making and gain competitive edge.

Every company desires a notable shift in their operations to perform optimally; however, some have not seen the need to employ business intelligence in their operations. With the speed of technological advancement in the world and the rise in competition, only companies that have mastered how to leverage business intelligence can stand a chance to gain a competitive edge. Therefore, using business intelligence tools empowers companies to make strategic decisions and perform at the highest level of their capability. 

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