Join our live webinar: It's Time To Upgrade Business Intelligence To Systems Of Insight

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    Oxana Noa Umansky (Edited )
    Thanks to everyone who joined us for our live webinar. Yesterday we explored the latest discoveries in BI, Agile BI, big data, and artificial intelligence and discussed best practices for getting BI to deliver tangible insights.
     
    The recording of this webinar is available on our Webinars page
     
    We've received a high volume of questions from participants interested in learning more on the topic. Unfortunately, we were unable to address all of the questions during our Q&A session. So we decided to post some of the questions along with the answers here. 
     
    Attendee: How is using insight an impetus for companies to grow?
    Ani Manian: "This is a great question. Growth is an interactive process. It's not something that happens immediately, or by accident. It's the result of many, many iterations of trial and error. Insight is the primary input to this process of trial and error. It's only when we consume insights and we understand how are we doing today, that we can try something different, that helps us do better tomorrow. So, to take a practical example, social media used to be just an expense on the marketing budget. Companies would just pump in money, expecting something magical to happen in the end. There was no way to refine how they spend this money, because they were not calculating an ROI, as social was not their expense. Now, marketing teams have to quantify a return on the dollars that they spend in their social media teams and further their social media strategy. They quantify the best way for their Reach, impressions, conversions. Ifact, every social channel, like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, all offer conversion stats. This is because companies want to know what works and what doesn't, so that next time they go out and spend the money, they use the right picture, the right copy that converts more and so on."
     
    Attendee: What advice would you give to a business user who needs to make a case for this to management?
    Ani Manian: "The business user that wants to do this, should start with articulating the kind of data that his or her company collects and that currently the company making decisions without. Then try to articulate how with this data, the kind of decisions he would make and the impact of these decisions. For example, if you currently buy a certain amount of inventory across three product lines and have no idea or no way to forecast which product sells, how much, for a particular month of the year. You have to buy inventory and use up warehouse and shelf space, without an educated way to predict which one to optimize for. The result of this is that certain products get sold and you run out of them, but other products don't and they are actually costing you in opportunity cost, because if you had bought less of those and more of the first ones, your total sales would be higher. Ultimately, every business decision, can be improved with the use of data, because data tells the truth and it tells you very accurately how much you need of what and what you need to do more of. For every business user who wants to make a case for this to management, there are some very practical things you can do. You can audit the kind of decisions you need to make, the KPIs that you are responsible for. If I'm the head of marketing, I'm not just been measured by my marketing KPIs, but I'm also responsible for moving those KPIs up. If I'm held responsible for certain KPIs, then I would want the full authority to affect those KPIS. The best way to affect those KPIs is by staying up to date on which actions are working and which are not. So I can do more of the ones that are working."
     
    Attendee: Any specific use cases or pointers for the manufacturing industry?
    Ani Manian: "Lots! The manufacturing industry is something that is really well suited for BI. This is a very complicated industry where you purchase raw materials and then you take the factory and manufacturing resources you have, to transform those raw materials into products that you sell. Numerous efficiencies can be gained in this process. Whether it's utilizing the right raw materials, optimizing personal in terms of factory capacity, monitoring the use and service levels of different machinery, optimizing factory storage space, suppliers, inventory, demand, and forecasting for the finished products, and numerous others. One great example of this, of one of our clients who is doing a great job using BI, specifically in the manufacturing industry, is Celestica and you can read about their case study here."
     
    Thank you Ani for your expert opinion on this subject. 
     
    We are happy to hear your thoughts on what are the best practices in your organization for getting BI to deliver tangible insights. 
     
    Thank you,
    Oxana
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