Implementation and ongoing investment in Business Intelligence (BI) solutions have failed to regularly meet organisational expectations, both in terms of business outcomes and cost. Reinforcing this, Gartner predictions for 2012 highlight that by 2015, more than 85% of Fortune 500 companies will have failed to effectively exploit Big Data (and by extension BI) to achieve competitive advantage.
In order to be one of the 15%, not 85%, consideration of the establishment of a BI Centre of Excellence is critical for organisations who wish to improve outcomes of BI within their organisation. The establishment of the centre of excellence can align strategy resources, focus capabilities and ensure education of projects and processes are shared across the organisation.
As a concept, the establishment of a COE can be daunting particularly to a siloed or overtly dysfunctional organisation. Potentially, organisations will incorrectly believe that they are not big or strategic enough to make such an investment. The Centre need not be a group of people on “special projects” in a corner office. Rather, it can work as a more dynamic team, focused, with a range of participants contributing around the central core requirement.
Business Benefits of establishing a Business Intelligence Centre of Excellence: Clearly there are a range of significant organisational benefits when establishing a BI Centre of Excellence.
- Growth in measurement of business benefits provided by investment in BI within the organisation.
- Increased ease of access to quality data from disparate sources. Following this, the capability to manage this data in a way that maximises business outcomes at speed.
- Increased user satisfaction with the IT department and enhanced perception as a proactive integrated business function
- Accelerated speed of adoption of BI solutions across the organisation
- Speed to implementation for BI Solutions
- Lack of project repetition
- Decreased software license and maintenance costs through smarter procurement
- Enhanced career opportunities and skill identification and assessment.
Note: Most of these outcomes have the potential to occur when BI is run as a disparate series of fiefdoms, but the prime opportunity exists for improved business outcomes with the shift towards the Competency Centre model of service delivery.
Further blog posts will look at how to set up a centre of excellence and assess the most appropriate structure and projects.