Business Intelligence and Your Business: Ignorance Is Not Bliss
Last month we talked about determining whether your company is ready to deploy business intelligence ‘intelligently.’ I mentioned that there’s a considerable gap between the cost to implement BI and the value gleaned from those efforts – which isn’t great for anyone whose bread-and-butter comes from demonstrating measurable results and ROI.
And as a quick refresh, deploying BI intelligently begins with assessing your organization’s BI goals – something a lot of companies don’t do well. It’s critical to link BI to your company’s goals/key initiatives – this helps insure the relevance of decisions made, actions taken based on your BI system.
So let’s focus now on tactics for linking BI to corporate goals.
If your corporate goals are to increase your customer retention rate and improve customer service, how do you measure that? One way is by creating business-level metrics.
Business-level metrics are those things that we can start to measure that support Key Risk Indicators (KRIs) and Key Performance Indicators (KPIs). In order to do that, we have to take a look at business processes you could actually change in order to measure whether you’re achieving our goals.
To address the time lag in customer resolution you may decide that you want to achieve a 24-hour resolution cycle. In order to do that, you also decide that you want to reduce customer wait times from 20 minutes to two minutes, and that you also want to put more information online so people can proactively take care of their problems. You want to get all of the documentation online in five months, which means that each month you need to put up 20% of that content. These goals are now tied to your corporate goals, and become the metrics you want to measure.
Now you need to look at your data sources. Where is that data that you need allowing you to measure and support these metrics? Where does it reside? If your target is a 24-hour resolution, you must have some time of kind of calculation from the CRM system that tells you when a customer ticket was opened and when it was closed. Putting more information online at a certain rate per month also means you need to know where that information is – and this will necessitate having an inventory plan. You need to know what you have so you know what order to put it in and how much is actually there to determine what equals 20% each month. And if your goal is a two-minute wait time, you’ll then need to tap into the phone system data in order to measure that.
Once you have identified the data sources needed, we can use those to impact your business processes. You can measure those business processes using your performance indicators and result indicators – and those in turn support your KRIs and KPIs, which support your critical success factors and ultimately help you achieve your corporate goals.