Focus on Business Analysts
Analytics are an important aspect of business measurement and performance management. The analysts, however, are even more important than the analytics. It is analysts – the people who perform. analysis – who find meaning in the data. These are the people who explore cause-effect relationships and who guide decision-making processes. It is they who will lead the charge to reshape decision making in business.
The shift to analyst focus is already underway. It goes hand-in-hand with the focus on business analytics. The goals of technology providers – user focused, ease of use, desktop based, agile, visual and accessible – all recognize and respond to the important role of business analysts.
But it takes more than technology. To achieve the right focus we must first answer the question: Where are the Business Analysts? Bear in mind that analyst focus is not reserved for those with business analyst job titles. Every manager in a business is a de facto business analyst. The controller performing cash flow analysis, the compliance officer performing risk analysis and the marketing manager analyzing campaign effectiveness all have some business analyst roles and responsibilities. These people are analytic professionals, though they may not be professional analysts.
但 这需要的不仅是技术。为了达到正确的关注，我们必须首先回答这样一个问题：业务分析师在哪里？记住，分析师重点不仅仅是拥有业务分析师职称的人。每名企业 里的经理事实上就是业务分析员。例如控制员执行的现金流量分析，遵守干事进行风险分析和营销经理分析广告系列的效果都有一些业务分析师的作用和责任。这些 人就是分析专家，尽管他们可能不是专业分析师。
Focus on Business
The final piece in the BI evolution puzzle is focus on business. The concentration here needs to be much deeper than the lip-service to business alignment. BI and business need to be consciously and actively aligned in three dimensions: management, motivation and measurement. Figure 3 illustrates this multidimensional view of analytic alignment – a business-oriented BI framework.
图3说明了这多方面的观点分析视图-以商业导向的为主的BI框架。The management dimension is used to achieve functional alignment. It describes what is managed and measured in analytic systems – the functional domains that are areas of management responsibility. The diagram in Figure 3 shows eight domains that are common to virtually every business. Don’t hesitate to adapt and customize these to be specific to your business. Those in the insurance industry, for example, might choose to show claims, actuarial and underwriting as items in the management dimension. Higher education may show education, research and student servi Normal 0 7.8 磅 0 2 false false false EN-US ZH-CN X-NONEces. Retail might include merchandising, customer relations, supplier relations, etc.
The motivation dimension supports goal alignment. It describes why we measure and manage – the criteria used to determine quality of management. The diagram illustrates four criteria: performance, compliance, profit and risk. This dimension may need to be tailored to the nature of your enterprise. Public sector organizations, for example, may need to include public service and public perception. Higher education institutions will certainly want to include accreditation.
The measurement dimension connects management and motivation with analytics. It describes the how of measurement-based management. The framework shows six elements that apply to enterprises of all types and in virtually every industry. A measure is a single, quantitative data value coupled with data describing the thing that is quantified and the time of measurement. A metric is a system of measures with sufficient context to provide information through sorting, grouping, filtering, summarization, etc. References are the comparative values that give meaning to metrics – the basis by which metric values can be evaluated as “good” or “bad.” References include thresholds, targets, previous values, etc. A trend is a specific kind of reference in which a series of metric values is compared to observe behavior. over time. Indicators are metrics used to evaluate performance against tactical and operational goals. An index is a composite of multiple indicators that is used to evaluate performance against strategic goals.
The three-dimensional approach to analytics is a powerful alignment tool. As illustrated in Figure 3, the framework contains 192 cells. Each cell represents analytic opportunities. When used to align, prioritize and identify analytic needs, the framework places the right emphasis on the business part of business intelligence.
Over the coming several months, business intelligence will experience change that will have broad, deep and lasting impact. Changing focus to simultaneously concentrate on business analytics, business analysts and business itself is significant. Ultimately, it will change the way that we think about business and the way that business decisions are made. When thoughtful analysis replaces gut feel, conventional wisdom, tribal knowledge and “the way we’ve always done it,” then we will realize the true potential of business analytics and enter into the next generation of business intelligence. We will truly enable business capacity to reason, plan, predict, solve problems, think abstractly, comprehend, innovate and learn. We will finally come full circle to realize Howard Dresner’s BI vision.
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Dave is a consultant, mentor and teacher in the field of business intelligence (BI). He brings to every consulting endeavor a unique and balanced perspective about the relationships of business and technology. This perspective – refined through a career of more than 35 years that encompassed both business and technical roles – helps to align business and information technology in the most effective ways.
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