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Business Intelligence: Let’s make better decisions

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Ignite Newcastle, #GIWN. …

Ignite Newcastle, #GIWN.

Lighthearted introduction to BI, using the O'Reilly Ignite, 20 slides in 5 mins, format.

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  • When we spotted this event, we thought it may be an ideal sales opportunity.We had visions of eager, attentive prospective customers, learning how Business Intelligence would transform the performance of their companies and differentiate them from their competitors.
  • Then I looked at the hugely entertaining videos of previous ignite presentations from around the world, and became aware that it’s not that sort of event, and not the opportunity we had anticipated. The quality of some of those piled the pressure on and made me a little apprehensive.Fortunately…
  • … fortunately my Director John was very understanding and supportive, releasing all that pressure and suggesting that I may like to give it a try.So I’ll give it my best shot to emulate those gifted ignite presenters!
  • So what is Business Intelligence?Well first of all it’s a stupid name, to me it seems to suggest some form of industrial espionage, but it’s nothing to do with that.A better name term may be Pervasive Organisation Insight.Now I know that doesn’t immediately sound better, so what do I mean now?
  • I mean, everyone makes decisions, so we need to give everyone the means; the insight, to make the decisions at their particular level.So, pervasive; insight throughout the organisation.
  • Now obviously they didn’t own up to making those bad decisions themselves, but the vast majority of them admitted that they make most of their decision on gut feel alone.Obviously this is a bad state of affairs, so how can we give them the necessary insight?
  • So how can we provide this insight?Well it normally starts with data.Now to make data into information you have to give it some context.Add some relevance or prior knowledge and that information is now useful.A BI solution will present or visualise collections of useful information at the right time to provide the INSIGHT needed to make an informed decision.
  • Rarely create dataSometimes have to find itOr unlock it
  • But usually it’s a case of identifying the really important stuff from the incidental and trivial data.Andjust occasionally when people focus on too limited a set of data, and can’t see the wood for the trees; we need to step back a little and take more of an overview..
  • Often people or departments have information that is usefulelsewhere. E.g., sales may have prospects info. that Purchasing and Production would find a really useful heads-up so a BI or data warehouse solution would make this available.Useful for integrating disparate packaged systems.
  • It’s vital that you trust your data.You may know the famous proverb, “The man with a watch knows the time, but the man with two watches is never sure”.A BI solution must ensure there is only ever one version of the truth, and will frequently involve data cleansing.
  • OK so we’ve identified ourdata.We can now convert it into information by putting it into a nice report, perhaps with a pretty graph. Now, whilst it is far more informative and intuitive than the table, it’s not yet really helping us with business decisions.
  • How is the business doing?Performance against target, perhaps with a visual representation would be better.Here, whilst overall we’re doing fine, looking into the detail points out that the North is performing poorly.A different style of display could be even better. Lets look closer at the North
  • At first glance, everything looks OK, steady rising graph. But when you compare to the target, it’s not so rosy.From October on, falling behind even the 5% acceptable shortfall.Why?
  • So drilling down further, we can clearly see where the problems lie…Actually not that clearly. Lets use our speedo dials again. Yep we can see that Manchester is dragging the rest of the North down as usual!We should probably now drill down further to find out who we need to sack!
  • So what we’ve seen is that a BI solution will answer your questions to allow better decisions. It will probably also highlight additional questions, and the answers to those will help further.
  • …but in order to answer new questions, the solution must be flexible.It must also be intuitive – to different people! Some people like pictures, some might want to ask questions the same way they do with Google...and it must be available for anyone who makes a decision.
  • In summary…It should illuminate your business, it’s performance and potential!It should allow you to get more from your existing systems.It should help to Cure your business pain!THANK YOU
  • Transcript

    • 1. Business Intelligence
      Fraser Macindoe
      STCS Ltd. Gateshead
    • 2. -££-
      Putty!
    • 3.
    • 4.
    • 5. So what is Business Intelligence?
      Pervasive, Organisation Insight!
    • 6. Give everyone the means to make good decisions
      Needs Strategic Insight
      Need Tactical Insight
      Need Operational Insight
      Pervasive Organisation Insight!
    • 7. In 2008, BusinessWeek Research Services conducted a survey of
      675US and European Business Managers.
      Over three quarters
      knew of decisions made, where insufficient information
      directly led to the wrong decision being made!
    • 8. In the same survey...
      Over 60% admit to making
      more than half of their own decisions on ‘gut feel’ alone!
    • 9. So how can we provide this Insight?
      DATA
      70
      Context
      INFORMATION
      Relevance
      !
      100
      USEFUL
      INFORMATION
    • 10. So how can we provide this Insight?
      DATA
      70
      Context
      INFORMATION
      Relevance
      !
      USEFUL
      INFORMATION
      Visualise/Present
      INSIGHT!
    • 11. So where do we get the initial data?
      DATA
      DATA
      DATA
      DATA
      DATA
      DATA
      DATA
    • 12. DATA
      TRIVIAL
      DATA
      RANDOM
      DATA
      DATA
      DATA
      TRIVIAL
      DATA
      RANDOM
      DATA
      DATA
      DATA
      DATA
      DATA
      MINOR
      DATA
      DATA
      USEFUL
      DATA
      INCONSEQUENTIAL
      DATA
      DATA
      DATA
      DATA
      DATA
      DATA
      DATA
      DATA
      PIFFLING
      DATA
      DATA
      DATA
      DATA
      DATA
      DATA
      DATA
      DATA
      DATA
      DATA
      DATA
      DATA
      DATA
      DATA
      PETTY
      DATA
      USEFUL
      DATA
      PIFFLING
      DATA
      DATA
      DATA
      DATA
      DATA
      DATA
      DATA
      DATA
      DATA
      DATA
      DATA
      DATA
      USEFUL
      DATA
      PIFFLING
      DATA
      OPERATIONAL
      DATA
      FRIVOLOUS
      DATA
      DATA
      DATA
      DATA
      DATA
      DATA
      DATA
      MINOR
      DATA
      USEFUL
      DATA
      DATA
      DATA
      DATA
      DATA
      DATA
      DATA
      DATA
      DATA
      DATA
      DATA
      MINOR
      DATA
      DATA
      DATA
      USEFUL
      DATA
      DATA
      DATA
      DATA
      DATA
      DATA
      PIFFLING
      DATA
      DATA
      DATA
      DATA
      DATA
      DATA
      USEFUL
      DATA
      DATA
      MINOR
      DATA
      DATA
      DATA
      DATA
      DATA
      DATA
      RANDOM
      DATA
      MINOR
      DATA
      DATA
      DATA
    • 13. DATA
      DATA
      PURCHASING
      SALES
      PRODUCTION
    • 14. It’s vital that you trust your data
    • 15.
    • 16. Corporate
      Scotland
      Central
      Wales
      London
      South
      North
    • 17. Cumulative Sales for North Region 2009-2010 (£ mill)
    • 18. Cheadle
      Trafford
      Liverpool
      Newcastle
      Sheffield
    • 19. A decent Business Intelligence solution will…
      answer your business questions
      allow better business decisions
      illuminate new questions to ask
      allow even better business decisions
    • 20. A Business Intelligence solution must be…
      flexible
      intuitive
      pervasive!
    • 21. A decent Business Intelligence solution should…