Why Modern Business Intelligence Means Self-Service Analytics

Peter Walker's picture
 By | July 06, 2015
in Business Analytics, Business Intelligence, Self Service
July 06, 2015

Customer insights no longer have to be reserved for the data scientist. 
Photo attributed to Vater_fotografo. http://bit.ly/1S39QJN

There’s been a lot of hype about big data. We all know why we need to use it in our businesses, but the question is now how it is used, or, indeed, who is going to benefit from it most.

Once upon a time, scientists and IT specialists were the only people with access to big data. This was because the data was so complex that only people with the requisite training could analyse it and turn it from figures into something truly tangible. At Information Builders, we recognise that the modern Chief Marketing Officer (CMO) has more responsibility than ever before. With CEOs trusting them to make strategic decisions that affect the whole enterprise, it is becoming their job to empower all employees through the power of data.

Today, businesses need to recognise that limiting control of analytics to a small number within the workforce has its disadvantages. According to our research, companies only access 20% of the data that is available – leaving a massive opportunity, a data goldmine just sitting there. This is in part due to the fact that data is delivered to a mere 10% of people who could potentially use it – data down the drain.   

With this in mind, businesses are focusing on how they can deliver rich, consumable, interactive information to everyone in the business. More and more, enterprises are looking towards a “self-service” scenario – data that can be accessed by anyone, at any time. The modern worker is used to having technology at their fingertips and the same should go for data analytics, which is essential in allowing them to do their jobs properly. They need to be able to make informed decisions, based on real-time data, very quickly and easily.  

The massive benefit of self-service is obviously that the insight is available for the masses – from the customer-facing staff to the power players in organisations – not just the data scientists. However, it’s not as simple as this one benefit. There are many different things people can do when the data is easily accessible and importantly, personalised, to their needs.

Firstly, performance is efficient because there is less wasted time. Processes also become simpler and easier to understand for everyone. Lastly, employees feel more satisfied with their job, as they are able to access the data they need autonomously and use it in the way that suits their expertise best. All these things together can give a business a genuine competitive advantage.

Self-service analytics doesn’t just mean “at-a-glace” information; you can drill down deeper into your data to:

  • Find critical indicators and metrics
  • Explore your data and realise its true potential
  • Interact with real-time data on any device
  • Integrate your data with desktop products (e.g. Excel, Adobe PDF)
  • Distribute reports with real-time alerts
  • Automate the scheduling and delivery of vital information

The overriding message here is – in today’s data-driven society, customer insights no longer have to be reserved for the data scientist. And, it’s up to the C-suite, the new breed of digital CMO in particular, to filter this into the workforce to create intelligence for everyone through self-service analytics.

See our infographic below for more visual information on how self-service analytics enhances your business intelligence so that there are no barriers to your success.