Buy the first cereal you find on the first shelf of the store? Well, that’s definitely not how you would purchase a business intelligence (BI) tool. While BI tools are a great way to analyze different statistics and are designed to meet niche business needs, you must pick one carefully.
Here are some tips to help you make the right choice while investing in a BI tool:
- Create a business analyst strategy.
Buying a business intelligence tool without having a proper strategy will be like buying a car, which runs on a fuel you can’t afford. Make sure you know the answer to these three questions before you take the plunge:
Where are you now? Where do you want to go? How do you get there?
- Consult your IT professionals.
Select a BI tool which minimizes the involvement of IT department instead of cutting their role. Have a discussion with your IT department because, it’s good to know about the technical details like integration cycles, scalability of the tool, etc.
- Refuse to invest a bomb on a single tool.
Investing in a tool is good idea, but know your limits and stop yourself from overspending. Go step by step. Test, check and repeat is the best approach.
- Perform a Proof-of-Concept (POC).
Check if the BI tool suits your IT environment or not. Perform a POC in your IT environment and get an idea of the functionality, connectivity, usability and performance of each Business Intelligence tool. Also check if the tool can provide up-to date information to support quick decision making.
- Check the accessibility of the Dashboard.
No doubt that BI tools produce dashboards that look enticing. However, make sure that your tool can create dashboards that are easily accessible and readable by your users. IT is best to go for a tool that can create dynamic dashboards according to different user roles.
- Have a check for mobile business intelligence and security levels.
Check if the BI tool can be integrated with the existing applications, and have the capability to show the information on mobile devices as well as transfer data on different databases without losing the integrity.
There is no one-size-fits-all BI analytics tool, and the tempting features shall not be the basis to decide which software to buy. Rather, organizations should determine which tool facilitates the types of analysis your users need now and in near future.