The average business intelligence (BI) user spends hours preparing ad-hoc reports weekly. This means that a lot of time and resources are spent on creating reports that could be easily automated.
Imagine a world where you could simply enter the data you need and have a report automatically generated for you in seconds. That is the power of BI ad-hoc reporting.
When your BI ad-hoc reporting process is streamlined, you can easily create reports on the fly without having to spend hours preparing them. Plus, once you have a report created, you can share it with others in your organization easily and quickly.
In this article, we are going to look at some of the top tips you can use right now to streamline your BI ad-hoc reporting process. But first, let’s take a look at what ad-hoc reporting is and why it’s important.
What is ad-hoc reporting?
Ad-hoc reporting is the creation of a report on the fly without having to rely on predefined reports. It gives users the ability to create custom reports based on their specific needs.
This type of reporting is important because it allows businesses to get insights into their data that they may not have been able to get before. Ad-hoc reporting gives users the ability to ask questions about their data that they may not have thought to ask before.
Why is it important to streamline your ad-hoc reporting process?
There are many benefits that come with streamlining your ad-hoc reporting process. The biggest benefit is that it saves you time. When you have a streamlined ad-hoc reporting process, you can easily generate reports on the fly without having to spend hours preparing them.
Another benefit of streamlining your ad-hoc reporting process is that it makes it easier to share reports with others in your organization. When you have a streamlined process, you can quickly share reports with others. This makes it easy for decision-makers to get the information they need to make informed decisions.
When you have a streamlined process, you can easily update your reports as new data becomes available. This ensures that decision-makers always have the most up-to-date information.
Now imagine your organization’s processes when it comes to BI ad-hoc reporting. How much time do you spend creating reports? How often do you have to update your reports? How easy is it to share your reports with others?
If you are like most businesses, the answers to these questions are not ideal. This is why it’s important to streamline your BI ad-hoc reporting process.
How to streamline your BI ad-hoc reporting process
When it comes to streamlining your BI ad-hoc reporting process, there are many different things you can do. Here are some tips to streamline your reporting process:
1. Use a self-service business intelligence tool
One of the best ways to streamline your BI ad-hoc reporting process is to use a self-service business intelligence (BI) tool. A self-service BI tool is a tool that allows users to create their own reports without having to rely on IT or another department.
Self-service BI tools give users the ability to access data from multiple data sources and then create reports based on that data. This means that users can easily get the insights they need without having to wait for someone else to generate a report for them.
2. Use data visualization tools
Another great way to streamline your BI ad-hoc reporting process is to use data visualization tools. Data visualization tools allow users to create visually appealing reports that are easy to understand.
When users can easily understand the data in a report, they are more likely to make better decisions. Data visualization tools also make it easier to spot trends and patterns in data. This can help users identify opportunities or problems that they may not have been able to see before.
3. Automate report generation
Automation is the future of business intelligence. Automating your BI ad-hoc reporting process can save you a lot of time and effort.
There are many different ways you can automate your report generation process, many of which we mention here. But the same principle applies: by automating your process, you can save time and effort.
4. Implement dashboards
Dashboards make it easy for users to see the most important information at a glance. In a BI ad-hoc reporting process, dashboards can be used to display report data in an easy-to-understand format.
If you are looking to really streamline your BI ad-hoc reporting process, you should consider deploying a centralized reporting solution. A centralized reporting solution is a platform that allows users to create, schedule, and share reports from one central location.
This can save a lot of time because users don’t have to login to multiple systems to generate or view reports. It also means that reports can be easily shared with others by email or through a central repository.
These are just a few of the many ways you can streamline your BI ad-hoc reporting process. By implementing these tips, you can make your process more efficient and save time.
Avoid these common pitfalls when streamlining your ad-hoc reporting process
When you are streamlining your ad-hoc reporting process, there are a few common pitfalls that you need to avoid. Here are some of the most common pitfalls:
1. Not identifying your data sources
Too many companies make the mistake of not identifying their data sources. When you are streamlining your process, it is important to know where your data is coming from.
If you don’t know where your data is coming from, you will have a hard time creating accurate reports. Make sure you take the time to identify and understand your data sources before you start streamlining your process.
2. Not defining your reporting requirements
Another common pitfall is not defining your reporting requirements. When you are streamlining your process, it is important to know what kinds of reports you need to generate and what those reports should contain.
If you don’t know what kind of reports you need, you will have a hard time creating them. Make sure you take the time to define your reporting requirements before you start streamlining your process.
3. Not implementing feedback
Provide users with the ability to give feedback on reports. This feedback can be used to improve the accuracy of reports.
Too many companies make the mistake of not implementing feedback. If you don’t have a way for users to give feedback, you will never know if your reports are accurate. Make sure you have a plan for how you’ll implement user feedback before you invest in a BI tool to streamline your reporting process.
The bottom line
As you can see, there are plenty of benefits to be found in streamlining your ad-hoc reporting process. By avoiding the common pitfalls and following the tips in this guide, you can streamline your process and save time.
Check out some related resources:
Nucleus Research: Domo’s ROI as a Data Platform
Domo Showcases ESG Solution for Gartner BI Analytics Showdown
Why BI Programs Fail to Scale: The Data Decision Gap
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