Business intelligence is booming.
Rapid improvements in technology, the exponential growth of the internet, cloud technology and the big data revolution have all spurred the growth of this industry.
As a result, there’s a growing demand for candidates who are highly skilled in analytics, who can interpret data, and generate deeper insight that leads to better decision making.
So how important is business intelligence to your company right now? If you haven’t asked yourself this question yet, this blog will help you discover how it can benefit your business, and reinforce why you should hire an experienced Business Intelligence Analyst today.
What is business intelligence?
Business intelligence, also known as BI, refers to the analysis of information to help optimise business decisions. Gartner forecasts this market will grow to $22.8 billion by the end of 2020, from $18.3 billion in 2017.
Most companies today collect a staggering amount of data in their business. In many cases though, this data can build up without ever actually being used. On its own, this data may not mean much. But business intelligence is about converting this data into a useful format.
You could also combine your internal business data with external market data, for greater “intelligence”. This valuable information can then be used to help your employees and management teams make much more informed decisions.
To support business intelligence, there’s a wealth of new BI software, such as data visualisation tools that allow information to be more graphical and easier to interpret.
Why is business intelligence important for your company?
Any successful organisation will tell you that better decisions can help drive stronger results, putting your company in a far stronger position to deliver on KPIs.
Decisions can also be made faster, enabling your business to remain competitive in the market.
To see how else you could benefit from business intelligence though, consider these five suggestions:
1. Manage risks
With any business, there’s an element of risk involved. With the help of business intelligence though, you can minimise that risk. For example, if you’re looking to launch a new service or make an investment, you can combine internal and external data, such as sales figures and market trends, so you have a more complete picture which can aid your future decisions.
2. Plan for seasonal variations
If your sales fluctuate at different times of the year, business intelligence can analyse historical sales data, as well as any external data available to create forecasts, enabling you to plan for these variations in advance.
3. Tailor products and services to customers’ needs
With the help of business intelligence solutions, you can track revenue to see which products and services are the most successful. You can also dig deeper into customer data to gain insights into their preferences and requirements, adapting your solutions to meet their needs.
4. Improve operational efficiency
By analysing relevant data you can identify where there are any bottlenecks or issues in your operations. With the help of this information, you can then investigate and make any necessary changes to your product, process or people.
5. Control expenses
You can use business intelligence to find trends in travel costs and expenses. It may reveal that employees are taking longer than expected to submit them for example, which may suggest you need to improve your expense process. You may also see areas where you can start to save costs.
Why should you hire a Business Intelligence Analyst?
The plain and simple answer is that the demand for business intelligence experts will only become more competitive.
According to Robert Half’s Salary Guide, 34% of CIOs in Australia are already finding it challenging to recruit talent in the business intelligence field.* Companies need to critically assess and action the hiring of a Business Intelligence Analyst to their organisation, or risk the uphill battle of competing for talent.
If you’re undecided, here are three key factors that may convince you:
1. They can provide necessary skills and experience
Anyone can learn new skills, but it’s easy for someone inexperienced to feel completely overwhelmed by the sheer amount of data, even with specialist tools available. Future plans for the business need information that is accurate and reliable in order to ensure the desired outcomes are achieved, so making an investment into a highly skilled talent in BI is a worthwhile decision.
2. They can save you time
Analytics can be extremely time-consuming and isn’t something you should just drop on existing employees. This can result in other important tasks being neglected or analytics work being rushed. Hiring a Business Intelligence Analyst will mean you have someone who is completely focused on your data and efficient at what they do.
3. They can help you to remain competitive
If your competitors are hiring experts in this field, this can put you behind the competition. Burying your head in the sand or “giving it a go” is not going to help the situation. Hiring your own Business Intelligence Analyst will be the most effective way to level the playing field.
For the future
Whilst some may believe it’s a new buzzword that will pass in time, the reality is that business intelligence is providing organisations today with real, long-term benefits - which will only improve as technology continues to advance.
In fact, businesses are already taking it to the next level by incorporating Artificial Intelligence (AI) with business intelligence to identify trends more efficiently, with the help of machine algorithms. As machine learning improves, this will help analysts to become even more valuable to businesses. Gartner predicts that by 2020, 90% of BI platforms will be powered by natural language generation and AI.
So if you’re looking to hire a Business Intelligence Analyst, contact Robert Half today.