The Decision Maker

Starting the Business Intelligence Journey

Posted by Tim Searle on Aug 10, 2014 12:03:28 PM

Congratulations! You’ve been tasked by your credit union’s leadership team to plan out the first steps of a Business Intelligence (BI) initiative.

The good news is your organization is convinced that performance improvement will be driven by better, faster information. Now for the hard part: where to begin?

Its budgeting season so there is an opportunity to get something on the drawing board. A good first step would be a BI Assessment Study conducted by an experienced BI consultant. The engagement would include:

  • Clarifying and rationalizing expectations for BI in the organization
  • Creating a high level inventory of useful data sources
  • Assessing “BI Readiness” in the organization to understand future training and internal marketing needs
  • Developing an “Impact-Effort Matrix” to map out the most promising projects
  • Constructing a “BI Roadmap” to visualize sequence, concurrence and dependence among the projects

What will it cost? It depends on a number of variables including the size of the organization and the depth of the analysis. What is important, when considering cost is that the funding for your Bi Initiative, is that it should be approached holistically. The benefits of a well designed and well organized data warehouse will benefit all and as such should be funded by all.

A budgetary model that looks to each department to plan for a percentage contribution promotes the concept of “Group ownership Group benefit”. Your Marketing area, the Branch Management team, Loans and Mortgages, etc are all potential contributors to the building of the initiative (with funding and expertise) as well as being end consumers of the final product.

An organization that has its BI initiative begin its life cycle with this mentality has a far greater likelihood of success than one that treats the work purely has a responsibility of the IT department.

Frequently the budget being forecast and managed by the IT department puts the funds into competition with other maintenance and operation support items. This constrains vision to the physical creation and management of the data warehouse and neglects to account for the internal marketing, training, and education that is essential in an organization that is looking to transition to using data to drive decisions on a daily basis.

A BI Assessment Study is a sound investment in getting your budget planning right from the outset and will provide a strong platform for the launch of your BI Initiative.

Credit Union Data Analytics, Beginning the Journey: Read the Whitepaper

Topics: Business Intelligence, Big Data, Credit Unions, Budgeting