Business intelligence is on everyone’s minds these days. But what exactly is so special about this growing field? And how can business intelligence be combined with ERP to change business processes within your company to better understand how your teams work and achieve excellence? Here are a few possible answers to the questions you have always asked about business intelligence with ERP.
What is business intelligence?
Business intelligence, also called BI, is a set of strategies and processes for converting your business’ internal and external data into critical management assets for making decisions and developing new knowledge. You can use business intelligence to develop action plans for creating new opportunities and expanding your business.
However, business intelligence isn’t just about collecting and storing data. It also involves many success factors that have garnered much interest from scientists working in this field of research. For example, a business’ corporate culture is an integral component in successfully implementing business intelligence. Recent advances in technology have sparked rapid growth within the business intelligence field.
When a business integrates a business intelligence culture into their framework for using technological tools such as ERP, they’re scaling up on both a commercial and an entrepreneurial level. This drastically changes how they do business. Implementing various assessment tools within your teams and processes represents a learning opportunity for your business.
By collecting a myriad of information on how they do business, companies that are at the forefront of business intelligence can improve their processes to better serve their clients and boost their revenues.
What is an ERP?
ERP is an IT software tool for creating a database that you can use to analyze all relevant information to automate certain recurring tasks. ERP, which stands for Enterprise Resource Planning, can also be seen as a sort of dashboard for managers, providing them with various indicators to inform their decision making. An ERP lets you continually analyze results using data that’s updated on-schedule.
Implementing an ERP helps businesses get ahead of their competition by gaining better insight into their sales and performance. ERP has proven its ability to produce significantly better results and benefits for organizations that opt to use this tool.
One of the major benefits of ERP is its ability to communicate between different departments within the same business, making it easier for teams to collaborate. This software puts an end to working in silos and promotes increased agility amongst team members.
What is the role of an ERP solution in business intelligence?
Business intelligence with ERP for data exploration (data mining)
Now that we have properly defined business intelligence and ERP, you can imagine how an ERP solution for business intelligence can act as a multiplier.
As we saw in the paragraph above, ERP serves as a sort of giant database in which you can compile all of a business’ data, whether it’s financial, human or logistical in nature.
In business intelligence, this database can be considered a giant, “open-air” library. This data storage lets you mine (gather) data.
With data mining, you can draw conclusions from the data. Of course, ERP forms the foundation of data mining by compiling results from the different departments that enter information into it. By coupling ERP with business intelligence, you’ll get much further ahead by creating data analysis tools that will let you observe situations from various perspectives.
Data mining is bolstered by the work of algorithms and involves more than just generating formulas like an Excel spreadsheet can do. Data is read using business intelligence and an ERP so that it’s mined using a clear process:
Since 2014, Microsoft Power BI has offered an affordable, effective IT solution for all companies seeking to integrate a business intelligence culture into their business processes.
Thanks to Power BI, data mining gives you the ability to generate detailed reports created using databases that draw on reliable sources of information. There are many benefits of Power BI, as it can be used as either a desktop or cloud-based application.
Teams that implement Power BI can not only share data in real time, but they also have 24/7 access to a collective brain that provides them with analyses they can use to inform their decision making. Power BI gives you access to tools for data analysis, planning and predictive analysis that will take your business’ performance to the next level.
Business intelligence with ERP for a more effective strategy
The pairing of business intelligence and ERP should not be seen just as a technical and IT solution. It represents an entire strategy for growth and success for businesses that implement it.
Used together, business intelligence and ERP allow you to draw conclusions from the data. You can inform your decision making with reliable, verified results. You won’t have to base any new strategy on your gut feeling or on a fleeting trend in the business world. With business intelligence, you can ensure that the strategic decisions made by management will be supported by reliable reports.
The business intelligence culture propels your business strategies to new horizons. Instead of fumbling in the dark, teams get a clear view of the various steps they need to take to achieve success. Every small step, every victory is part of a pattern based on data analyzed by an algorithm.
Practically speaking, the pairing of business intelligence and ERP lets you, in marketing for example, predict a client’s behaviour by analyzing their buying process. Once analyzed, these data can inform your decision making regarding ad placement, logistical changes or improvements made by the research and development department.
Business intelligence has one goal: grow your business by gaining a better understanding of your practices using data analysis.
Business intelligence with ERP makes for a winning duo
Using an ERP lets you automate many recurring tasks that are largely menial: creating invoices and payment reminders, following up with clients, etc. Implementing ERP within your teams saves you valuable time and plays a major role in your employees’ efficiency. They can focus on what they’re brilliant at by doing the tasks they have been trained for. It has also been demonstrated that integrating technologies such as ERP produces results in human resources management, particularly with regards to employee retention.
That said, summarizing business intelligence and ERP brings another element to the advancement of technology.
You can think of ERP as a big library in which dedicated librarians take the utmost care to re-shelve books using logical, intelligent methods. These are the data collection and integration stages that form part of the business intelligence process (stages 1 and 2).
BI, or business intelligence, is in some sense the researcher who uses this library. Data that’s properly organized can be shared by the researcher, who can provide a comprehensive overview of the data for everyone (stage 3). They can then reproduce the data in the form of a final recommendation to assist managers in their decision making (stage 4).
This simple yet robust mechanism is what makes business intelligence and ERP an innovative and winning solution for businesses that put in the effort to implement both of them together. Implementing a business intelligence solution will drastically change how you use ERP software. While ERP represents a critical database for teams striving for excellence, implementing a business intelligence solution such as Power BI gives you all the tools you need to take stock of your business’ actual needs and convert raw data into lucrative business solutions.
Why choose Gestisoft for your ERP business intelligence solution?
At Gestisoft, we can help you implement the best combination of business intelligence and ERP. We are CRM and ERP experts in North America and Europe who focus first and foremost on listening to your needs. Every business that sets out to implement a business intelligence process is seeking the most tailored solution for their situation. Our experts are here to listen to you and are familiar with the best and latest IT solutions on the market. To scale up your business to the next level, give us a call to discuss business intelligence solutions that are tailored to your business model.