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Should Your Organization Opt For New BI Tools?


The world of BI is constantly evolving. New and improved systems make what was once cutting-edge technology seem completely obsolete. But you need to consider the potential benefits and risks before making any big investments. Here are some things to consider when determining if your organization should opt for new BI tools. 

What Benefits Are You Getting from Your Legacy BI?

When analyzing the pros and cons of getting new BI tools, it’s important to understand exactly what you have right now. If you’re not using the BI system every day, take some time to learn about its capabilities.

It’s never useful to an organization or its employees to try to force a legacy BI tool to do something that’s outside its intended design. Listen to the people who are experts. If your IT and data specialists are pretty unanimously saying you need new tools in order to move forward with certain goals, it’s likely the truth.

Another sign it’s time to re-evaluate your approach to BI is if your company is still viewing analytics as a cost center rather than a revenue driver. If you’re not seeing tangible results — like company growth or customer satisfaction — then your current BI tools just aren’t delivering.

Are Employees Actually Using Your BI Tools?

There’s a vast difference between enterprises deploying BI systems and employees actually adopting these tools as part of their regular workflows. You can and should consistently measure your organization’s adoption rates against industry benchmarks to gauge how you stack up. For example, Gartner put average adoption of BI and analytics tools around 30 percent of all employees in 2017. If you’re seeing lower adoption rates than others, dig into why — perhaps your legacy tools are not user-friendly or speedy enough.

One direct way to get to the bottom of consistently low BI adoption rates is to survey employees as to why they do or do not use the BI tools available to them. This valuable feedback will help you choose new tools that alleviate user pain points, so your business can get the best ROI possible from your data strategy.

Do You Have to Choose Between Data Volume & Time to Insight?

If you find your organization having to choose between maintaining a large, inclusive volume of data from which to pull insights vs. getting insights quickly enough to be useful, you’re missing out on the benefits of the best BI tools and platforms available today.

Organizations today no longer need to choose between data volume and insight speed; modern systems are able to pull insights in seconds, even from many disparate data sources — both internal and external. Modern data warehouses are set up to deliver speedy results regardless of how much data they’re storing and from what source the data points originate.

Take it as a sign that it’s smart to invest in newer, better BI tools if you’re still forced to choose between data volume and speed.

What Are Your Competitors Doing?

Running an enterprise isn’t simply about keeping your attention focused internally. Your success depends on keeping an eye on what’s happening around you. Tools like Google Alerts and others can help you track the activity of your competition

Competitors aren’t going to just freely offer you information about their plans. However, you can gain a lot of important insights by learning about how they’re using effectively using data in their operations. You can also try contacting executives in tangential industries to talk about how your organizations are succeeding with BI, and where you want to see things improve.  

BI is going to be an essential part of running a business for the foreseeable future. Take care in determining whether it’s time to get new BI tools. 

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