9 years ago

How Can SMEs Leverage Business Intelligence to its Advantage?

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For most small- and medium-sized enterprises, business intelligence is too complex and too complicated to understand.  It is enough to intimidate the most steadfast small business owner as he or she needs to wade through jargon and technical terms, and will also need top-notch IT resources and expertise.  This is the reason why most small business owners often do not consider implementing business intelligence strategies for their enterprise.

And that is a sad conclusion, considering that business intelligence brings a lot of advantages, particularly when you face challenges that are common to all small businesses.  Business intelligence can help you gather your data from different parts of your operations and give you insights that are both meaningful and useful.

Some of the most valuable benefits of business intelligence include the following:

  1. Grow your business.  As a small business, you need to make sure that you continue to grow profitably in order to avoid being made irrelevant by competitors or getting trumped and swallowed by big companies.  Business intelligence allows you to know which segments or products are going to be a hit with your customers, so that you would be able to focus your resources on these products or segments.
  1. Take advantage of new market opportunities quickly.  Small businesses often have it good in that they are able to quickly take advantage of market opportunities as soon as these arise.  But because you have limited resources at your disposal, you would need to know which of these opportunities are worth investing in, and business intelligence helps you with that.
  1. Getting everybody on the same page.  If you make available all your enterprise’s data to everyone in the organization, it would be easier for different components to share the same conclusions about the business.  This means that if your sales, marketing, finance, engineering and other departments have access to the same data and all the data in your organization, then it would allow them to stay focused on the same priorities.

Business intelligence gives you the opportunity to better understand, analyze and predict what is going to happen to your business.  You get all the data you gather from different aspects of your business, from financial, to sales, to manufacturing, and your business intelligence systems turn all of these data, information and numbers into something meaningful that you can use for decision-making.  You can even give access to these information to the people and departments that need it, at the time they need it.

Your managers can then make better and timely decisions using the data you get from business intelligence.

What’s more, business intelligence can show you what part of your business is working and what is not working, and how prevailing conditions are affecting your business.  This way you can react accordingly and funnel your limited resources where it is needed most or where it can give you the best return on investment.

The good news is that business intelligence does not have to be complex and confusing for small businesses.  Oracle has several business intelligence tools that are geared towards SMEs.  Call Four Cornerstone today if you want to get a handle on business intelligence without having to be swallowed by it.  Our team of Oracle certified experts could advise and teach you about Oracle business intelligence tools, which you can use to take your small business to the next level.

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