Organizations are made of teams and stakeholders that have diverse goals and motivations. When planning a new project or BI implementation, creating the right team involves a mix of finding the right skill sets and differing viewpoints to meet a diverse set or requirements. More importantly, a team made of differing stakeholders increases the likelihood of adoption, as you can better understand each group’s needs. By focusing on this aspect of team building, you can build better bridges organizationally, more easily resolve problems, and improve your ROI faster. Let’s consider how to form the right project team.
Why the Right Team Matters
BI Projects require different areas of expertise and impact a broad range of stakeholders. As such, it’s important to consider what each team member should bring to the table ahead of time, as well as what you can offer them in terms of business returns. The first step is to break down your stakeholders.
Stakeholders are any members of your organization that will be impacted by a project. This goes further than the departments directly affected by an implementation. Consider stakeholders who are not in the project’s direct scope and how they may be affected by the new development. Building a team involves finding representatives who offer valuable insights into a stakeholder group. This way, you can draw on unique expertise and better fulfill your project requirements.
In the end, there are four major players (or categories) that will make up your team. that shape how your team will look—your executive sponsor, management, the available resources, and your end business users—those stakeholders who will use BI day-to-day.
Build Your Team With Purpose
Considering your stakeholders with help you identify positions of need within your project. It helps to break down your requirements by project scope and specific areas of need for success. To be effective, contemplate your needs in these four categories:
- Project Sponsors
These are people within the organization who naturally understand the potential of BI and see its impact and advantages. They are crucial members of a team, as they are your allies and offer access into the different teams they come from which leads to broader recognition and traction. Executive Sponsors, sponsors within the management team can secure resources such as budget and staff for a team, something that must flow from the top down. They are the ones who first create awareness and help push adoption on an organizational level.
Managers are the key drivers of day-to-day success. Deployed across individual verticals, managers are responsible for coordinating their specific teams and providing the tools they need for success. Additionally, they also provide a better bird’s eye view of a project’s direct impact, giving better parameters and requirements. Including managers is useful considering they have clearer knowledge of what their stakeholders need from a project.
- Implementation Resources (IT or BI)
Your implementation resources are members of your team who will handle the heavy lifting. These includes the BI developers, analysts and potentially data scientists that will take charge of the analytics portion of your project. However, simply adding more bodies can lead to confused roles and responsibilities. Instead, consider specific needs and identify the best employees to fit the bill. Think about who will be managing the project and how they interact with the team members you’ve chosen. The more planning ahead you can accomplish, the smoother your project will flow.
- End Business Users
Most importantly, picking the right team starts with understanding your end users’ needs. Designate or recognize a BI Champion or Super User in each department whose role is to navigate between the end users and sharpen their requests, the project sponsors and the implementation team. Different projects impact specific teams and individuals, so speaking with them beforehand will help improve planning and supply a clearer idea of your project’s scope. Focusing on providing these narrower, quick wins can lead to better adoption rates within your organization. By ensuring your team includes input from each major stakeholder group, you can create a more universal and easily implemented solution.
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