Do you have time set aside in your business intelligence (BI) project plan to train your business end-users? If you do, then I would urge you to think hard about what you are doing, because the need for business user training may well be an indicator that your project will not be the success you are hoping for.
As Mico Yuk is fond of saying, there is only one success metric which matters in BI: User Adoption. And, there are three reasons why the need for business user training kills adoption: Continue reading →
Last week, Howard Dresner, a long-time BI analyst and the person who, back in 1989, coined the modern use of the term Business Intelligence, posted to his blog on Sand Hill an article which, at least to my mind, contained two of the best pieces of news about BI I have heard for a long, long time. These were the following quotes from his “Wisdom of Crowds® Business Intelligence Market Study”:
As you plan your move away from Xcelsius/SAP Dashboards (which, if you are not already doing, you really ought to get started) then I would recommend listening to a recent episode of the Diversified Semantic Layer Podcast* entitled “Is DesignStudio the Dashboard Slayer?”.
The question up for discussion was whether DesignStudio is a suitable replacement for Xcelsius / SAP Dashboards. Key quotes were:
“If [in DesignStudio] you want more than a single chart pointing at a single data source that doesn’t need to refresh or have any interaction … you need to write some sort of code”
“If you are a traditional Xcelsius developer I don’t know how you would get started with that”
“If you are a BX or BEx shop it makes a lot of sense to use DS, if you are not, good ******* luck for the time being”
“Turning all your Xcelsius developers into Design Studio developers; that is not going to happen for most customers”
As someone who has previously written (here and here) about how technology labels often don’t help us, you might think it a little odd to find me writing a post comparing one label (BI Apps) with another (self-service BI), but bear with me.
I came across an article written by a product marketing chap, which draws an interesting analogy between doctors needing patient information and corporate users of BI. The article is not recent, but we still see a trend, especially from vendors, claiming that self-service BI is everything business users need.
The author of the article asks us to imagine a scenario where doctors are not allowed to access data directly, but instead have to go and ask non-medical, data specialists for the information, sometimes waiting hours or days for the answers. Clearly, this is supposed to be a parody on the way BI works in some organizations and equally clearly this would be a ludicrous way to run a hospital.