Selecting a business intelligence solution for your business is as unique a process as selecting a life partner, as both are there to stay and stay for long. Their presence or absence could help you succeed or face the biggest failure of your life, professionally and personally.
But noteworthy here is the fact that what works best for one business may be totally wrong for another. Confusing the scenario further are those countless vendors in the market, each of them offering a different and unique solution.
So here are some guidelines that may help you to appropriately evaluate BI tools in the context of your organization.
But I do have a BI solution, what’s wrong with it?
With your existing BI solution in place, ask yourself; why you are looking to make a change.
- Who are the current users of the system and what is their opinion about it?
- What is it that your users are trying to achieve by using the BI tool, and how effectively and efficiently do they succeed in achieving their goals?
- Is the current BI solution cost effective, or do you end up paying too much as fees, monthly or annually, for unused features?
Database technology, what is it?
- What do you expect from your database in form of current business needs? Are you expecting growth of a degree, which needs your solution to be flexible and scalable?
- What is the current and futuristic count of users and data sources? And what is the anticipated volume and complexity of data in coming years?
- If you feel your needs are limited, go ahead to consider a full data warehouse or a simple data mart – that certainly allows you to focus on a single area such as sales and marketing.
How do you expect the BI solution to perform once implemented?
- What all features will the BI solution offer in form of collaboration, modeling, and visualization features?
- Can you expect the solution to be user friendly for technical and non-technical users; alike?
- Will the data operations be quick enough to meet your business needs?
- Is the BI solution programmed to generate reports that can be comprehended conveniently for executives of your organization?
- How well the BI solution will integrate itself with your existing technology?
- Does it replace the functionalities of your existing BI solution, and if yes – how well?
- Is your vendor committed about providing support and training during and after BI solution installations?
With so many BI solutions providers in the market, you are wise enough to not to waste time-money and energy by selecting the not so right fit. Ask yourself all of the above questions; trust me they are the ones that will certainly work to your advantage while selecting the right business intelligence solution provider, that suits your business needs.