/ How to ensure you’re using your BI tool to its full potential

How to ensure you’re using your BI tool to its full potential

By now, you likely understand the importance of business intelligence (BI) and reporting tools. After all, these tools can help you make better decisions, improve efficiencies, and optimize your bottom line.

However, do you ever wonder if you aren’t using your BI reporting tool to its full potential? If so, you’re not alone.

In fact, many businesses fail to capitalize on all the features and functions their BI reporting tool has to offer.

Since their inception, BI reporting tools have evolved significantly. Today’s BI reporting tools are more user-friendly and offer a variety of features that can be tailored to the specific needs of your business.

So, if you’re not using your BI reporting tool to its full potential, what’s holding you back? In this article, we will look at 10 ways you might be underutilizing your BI reporting tool, as well as the solution to ensure you get the most out of it.

 

1. Are you taking advantage of all the features?

The problem

When it comes to business intelligence reporting tools, one size does not fit all. In other words, different businesses have different needs. As a result, many businesses fail to take advantage of all the features their BI reporting tool has to offer.

For example, let’s say you’re using a BI reporting tool that offers customer segmentation but you’re not taking advantage of this feature. As a result, you’re not able to properly target your marketing efforts, which could be costing you valuable customers.

The solution

Start utilizing all the features your BI reporting tool has to offer. By doing so, you’ll be able to tailor the tool to the specific needs of your business, which will help you improve decision-making, optimize processes, and boost your bottom line.

 

2. Are you getting the most out of your data?

The problem

A common issue businesses face is not knowing how to properly utilize the data they have. As a result, they end up with a lot of data but no actionable insights.

For example, let’s say you’re tracking website traffic but you’re not sure how to interpret the data. Without the proper context, the data is essentially useless. And when data is useless, so is your BI reporting tool.

The solution

Make sure you’re getting the most out of your data by properly utilizing your BI reporting tool. This includes understanding what data to track, how to interpret it, and how to use it strategically. By doing so, you’ll be able to glean actionable insights that will actually lead to results.

 

3. Are you automating the creation of reports?

The problem

One of the biggest benefits of using a BI reporting tool is the ability to automate reporting. However, many businesses fail to take advantage of this feature. As a result, they end up spending valuable time and resources on manual reporting, which can be error-prone and time-consuming.

When you spend too much time on manual reporting, you’re not able to focus on more important tasks, such as analyzing data and utilizing it to make decisions.

The solution

Automate your reporting. By doing so, you’ll be able to free up valuable time and resources, which you can then reinvest in other areas of your business.

Take advantage of the automation features your BI reporting tool has to offer. Learn how to set up automated reports and make sure they’re being generated on a regular basis. Doing so will help you save time, avoid errors, and get faster and more accurate insights.

 
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4. Are you sharing insights with the right people?

The problem

Another common issue businesses face is not sharing insights with the right people. When decision-makers don’t have access to actionable insights, they can’t make informed decisions.

The solution

Make sure you’re sharing insights with the right people by utilizing the sharing features in your BI reporting tool. This may mean creating custom reports or dashboards that can be easily accessed by decision-makers.

Many BI tools provide the option to collaborate with team members within the tool itself, so you can work on analyzing data together and instantly share valuable insights.

 

5. Are you leveraging real-time data?

The problem

Many businesses fail to take advantage of real-time data, which can be a valuable asset. When decision-makers don’t have access to real-time data, they can’t make informed decisions in a timely manner.

For example, let’s say you’re tracking website traffic but you’re not using real-time data. As a result, you might not be able to properly respond to a sudden spike in traffic.

The solution

Make sure you’re leveraging real-time data by utilizing the features in your BI reporting tool. From there, you’ll be able to make informed decisions at the right time instead of reacting after the fact.

 

6. Are you creating customized reports?

The problem

Many businesses fail to customize their reports, which can be a valuable asset. When decision-makers don’t have access to customized reports, they can’t make informed decisions about specific issues.

The solution

Make sure you’re creating customized reports by utilizing the features in your BI reporting tool. For example, you can create custom reports for your marketing team that include the metrics and data points they need to track.

Doing so will help them stay on track, measure their progress, and see how their efforts are impacting your business.

 

7. Are you visualizing your data correctly?

The problem

Many businesses fail to appropriately visualize data, which can be more of an obstacle than an asset. Often, organizations that begin using a BI tool will start visualizing data without making sure the chart types and metrics are the most appropriate for the situation.

One common issue businesses face is using data that is not visually clear. This can make it difficult for decision-makers to understand what the data is telling them. As a result, they might not be able to properly interpret the data and make informed decisions.

The solution

Make sure you’re effectively visualizing data by utilizing the features in your BI reporting tool. Don’t let data interpretation be a barrier to making informed decisions. By visualizing data in a comprehensible way, you can increase understanding for all parties, which leads to better decision-making.

 
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8. Do departments have access to all relevant company data?

The problem

Many businesses fail to analyze data consistently across all departments, which can lead to silos. When decision-makers don’t have access to consistent data, they can’t make informed decisions.

Silos can quickly develop if each department is using different software or if data is not being shared between departments. As a result, decision-makers in one department might not be able to properly interpret the data and make informed decisions.

The solution

Make sure you’re analyzing data consistently across all departments by utilizing the features in your BI reporting tool. This will allow you to create reports that can be easily accessed and understood by all decision-makers. For example, you can create a report that includes data from all departments and share it with everyone. Doing so will help break down silos and ensure all decision-makers have the data they need to make informed decisions.

 

9. Are you using dashboards to address business questions?

The problem

The whole purpose of BI reporting tools is to help organizations use data to answer business questions that can inform future decisions. If you’re not using your BI tool to answer these questions by examining the story that the data tells, you’re missing out on critical benefits.

The solution

Learn the best practices for building dashboards so that you can effectively utilize dashboards to discover answers to pertinent business questions. Construct the layout of dashboards so that the visualizations follow a logical flow from one to another. Exemplary dashboards efficiently convey insights that executives and other stakeholders can use to make better decisions.

 

10. Are you staying up-to-date with BI tool software releases?

The problem

Technology is constantly evolving, and your BI reporting tool is no exception. If you’re not staying updated with the latest releases, you might be missing out on valuable features and functions. As a result, you may not be able to take full advantage of your BI reporting tool.

The solution

Make sure you’re staying up-to-date with your BI reporting tool’s releases by subscribing to the vendor’s release notes. Don’t hesitate to upgrade to the latest version — it might just offer the features and functions you’ve been waiting for.

 

The bottom line

BI reporting tools offer a wide range of features and functions that can help businesses make informed decisions. However, many businesses don’t take advantage of all the features their BI reporting tool has to offer.

In this article, we’ve shown you 10 ways you might be underutilizing your BI reporting tool. By utilizing the features in your tool, you can get the most out of it and make better decisions for your business.

Don’t let data be a barrier to making informed decisions. Utilize the features in your BI reporting tool to get the most out of it.

Check out some related resources:

Why BI Programs Fail to Scale: The Data Decision Gap

Closing the Data Decision Gap

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