Examples of Defining Business Value for BI and Analytics Initiatives

Topics: Business intelligence, Analytics, Strategic business unit Pages: 9 (2159 words) Published: October 26, 2013
Publication Date: 26 September 2011

ID Number: G00218934

Examples of Defining Business Value for BI and
Analytics Initiatives
Bill Hostmann

There are different ways of measuring the business value of business intelligence (BI) and analytics initiatives. The definition of "business value" depends on whether it is being evaluated by IT or the business organizations. The business values cited by the top 10 finalists in the 2011 Gartner BI Excellence Award program are used to provide examples of a model defining the dimensions and categories of business value. Key Findings

The measures of business value for BI investments must be defined from an IT and a business perspective. The measures of business value are different from an IT and a business perspective, and the sum of the business value is the sum of both of these perspectives.

A recommendation from a 2011 BI summit workshop in North America advised that IT should not lead the definition of business value that a BI and performance management initiative delivers. That business sponsor should define this value with IT supporting the business case.

The top 10 entrants in Gartner's 2011 BI Excellence Award program in North America cited a mix of both directly enabled (that is, tangible) and contributed (that is, intangible) business values derived from their BI excellence investments.

Constantly prioritize BI, analytics and performance management initiatives based on the changing business value of the initiatives.
Expect additional investment in scaling up user training and satisfaction testing to gain user trust and use after the introduction of a new BI and performance management technology. This investment will enable and measure the business value gains in operational efficiency in the broader use of analysis and information. Address/transform one business unit or process at a time. This is more efficient compared to providing BI to all the business units at once.

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Defining the business value of software investments can be difficult, especially for IT professionals identifying BI investments, which are often driven by the need for "better decisions." ("Better decisions" consistently ranks at the top of user surveys asking about the drivers for BI investments.) To the IT organization, BI investments...
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