How Is Business Intelligence Software Used?

How Is Business Intelligence Software Used?

As businesses strive to achieve a competitive advantage and adapt to change, business intelligence (BI) software has become an important digital transformation tool. Modern BI has a low entry barrier and businesses can implement the software easily. Executives may be unsure whether BI can benefit their businesses, but BI is used to increase profit and reduce costs in areas such as inventory, sales, marketing and finance. So, how is business intelligence used, and who uses it?

Wide-Ranging Benefits.

Business Intelligence Software has the capacity to collect data from disparate systems and provide holistic insights. It is designed to be used by all employees of a business from senior executives and department managers to sales representatives and data entry clerks. So, employees from any department can understand the data and offer insights unique to their area of work. Security settings can be used to ensure that users are only granted access to the data appropriate to their position.

Business Intelligence for Executives.

BI offers a clear and comprehensive overview of a business’s overall performance. Executives can customise their dashboards and individualise the metrics so that the information displayed is that which is most relevant to their specific needs. Via the dashboard, current information is accessible, which empowers executives to follow trends, develop data-based strategies, and make important decisions based on facts rather than instinct. Mobile capability gives access to data whenever and wherever it is needed. Having access to immediate, up-to-date data can only improve efficiency and free up time for other more pressing matters.

Business Intelligence for Sales Departments.

BI provides important insights for sales staff. Analysing customers’ buying patterns provides valuable information to sales managers. With BI they can quickly identify new trends and pinpoint sales opportunities. Sales managers can see how products are selling by region, store, sales team, or individual representative. If sales are falling for a specific product, a manager can use BI to help identify the cause and offer support to halt the slide. With BI, sales representatives can become better equipped to satisfy their customers’ needs and address their concerns. Such nurturing of customers can go a long way towards increasing sales and enhancing customer loyalty. With BI, sales managers can follow the performance of their team. If a team member consistently fails to meet targets, data can help to identify the cause.

Business Intelligence for Operations and Inventory.

BI is an effective tool for managing inventory and warehouse activity. Streamlining inventory management can help with cutting costs and avoiding losses. BI can display data showing exactly what stock you are carrying and the sales history of that stock. This enables an inventory manager to maintain optimum stock levels. Armed with this knowledge, a purchasing manager can keep a warehouse well stocked to meet customer demands without overstocking. This frees up capital for other uses, and the dilemma of redundant stock is avoided.

Business Intelligence for Finance

Financial health is of key importance for any business. Having access to a detailed and accurate financial picture is critical for ongoing success. With BI, financial managers and accountants can customise profit and loss, balance sheets, and cash flow statements for every part of a business. Analytics tools can allow financial teams to identify areas which need improvement and thus develop effective strategic and financial plans. Financial staff can also use BI to create and manage payable and receivable rebates. This brings clarity and accuracy to typically complex rebate systems. Through BI assisted analysis, financial staff can gain greater insight into profitability and adjust pricing structures as required.

Business Intelligence for Marketing.

BI can be used to identify trends and thus guide the development of marketing campaigns. After the campaigns are complete, BI can be employed to assess their effectiveness. With accurate assessments, the marketing team can optimise their budgets. BI also enables the marketing team to share data and collaborate with the sales department to develop promotional offers.

With BI providing so many uses it’s easy to understand why businesses are making the integration of a BI solution a top priority. BI provides the insight to identify both new opportunities and ineffective areas of business to gain market advantage. Businesses that choose not to adopt BI may not be in business for much longer.

Paul Sebastian

Paul Sebastian is an avid wordsmith and a dedicated storyteller who has been crafting narratives for over a decade. With a Bachelor's degree in Creative Writing and a passion for exploring the human experience, Paul Sebastian infuses his writing with a blend of artistry and empathy that leaves readers both moved and enlightened.

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