Rolling Out A Business Intelligence Tool: The Basics

Cătălin is the lead Project Manager at Tecknoworks, with extensive experience heading international projects in Data Analysis, Business Intelligence, and Office Automation.

Rolling out a business intelligence tool in any company, especially an enterprise organization, comes with risks that have the potential to damage the company’s reputation or affect day-to-day operations.

Big-picture thinking, problem-solving, and up-front planning are key to effective adoption, as well as bringing trust and peace-of-mind to all stakeholders.

Below are the basics to keep in mind when rolling out a business intelligence tool in your organization.

Getting the lay of the land

The first steps in the all-important discovery and analysis phase are:

 

  • Understanding the data landscape
  • Determining the key personas in the organization
  • Detailing processes end-to-end
  • Understanding the needs of the stakeholders
  • Getting the status quo on currently-used BI used tools
  • Documenting the security constraints

Monitoring activities and taking proactive measures

Some of the most critical elements of an enterprise BI rollout include:

 

  • Ensuring that you carefully follow any change in elevated admin privileges
  • Understanding how data is leaving the company
  • Capturing suspicious activities
  • Educating the organization to understand the impact of their actions
  • Automation is key – eliminate manual checks and deploy solution accelerators to decrease user ramp-up time and encourage fast adoption

Security and continuous delivery

Understanding how data is shared, the impact of various roles, how users can easily share what they author, and how external users can consume content securely is the tip of the iceberg.

Architecting continuous integration and delivery mode for any BI tool is key in ensuring that the content that is shared is production-ready and properly vetted before release.

Simulating peak loads of usage for your environment before the release will determine if the setup is ready to sustain a real-life usage with no downtime and offer a great experience to the end-user.

Next up

This is a 3-part series on best practices for rolling out a business intelligence tool. Next time, we’ll discuss details around monitoring and adoption.

In the meantime, you might like to check out the Top 5 Mistakes to Avoid in Business Intelligence.