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September 26, 2017
By Bill Tennant
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Tips & Tricks,Trends
Having just returned from presenting at the Power BI World Tour in New York, I wanted to share some thoughts on the use of self-service BI solutions in the market today.
Self-service BI is certainly a fantastic business tool. It puts power in the hands of end users. But it also raises challenges related to data governance, accuracy, and the risk of incorrectly-constructed queries into underlying data. And this was a key theme in New York: the struggles midmarket organizations might face when developing their data management strategy.
Investment in BI is a necessity—I doubt you’d find a single executive who disagrees with this—but the term ‘BI’ is unbelievably broad. As with most BI investments, you have three distinct groups sitting at the table that is the feast of data:
Each of the above diners at the data feast has their place, and view the world of data as distinctly different, yet valuable. Moving toward a data-driven culture is top of mind for these individuals, but viewed from entirely different perspectives.
The greatest constant within all three of these groups is that without a strategy for delivering on the business’ data needs, they can never achieve the cost-effective, transformational shift that is needed.
The development of a clear strategy can take many forms but, whatever form it takes, it needs to deliver incremental returns at every step.
Regardless of which camp you and your business fall into, regardless of your desire to either analyze big data or lower costs, my advice would be to start small, deliver value straight away, and develop achievable objectives and a clear strategy.
Through data-automation, executive sponsorship, iterative value-adds, and the delivery of incremental wins, I think you can quickly achieve those milestones that fall into the category of “wouldn’t it be awesome if we could do this…”
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