By the year 2020, it is predicted that analogue data will have been phased out entirely and that there will have been a 100-fold multiplication in the digital data connected by an IP address, meaning it could be connected to any other data via the internet.
As the amount of available data increases, so does the potential to see new patterns that was previously not noticeable. However, with such a drastic increase in the amount of data available to us, it becomes much harder to sift through and patterns become more difficult to discern.
Sales optimisation and information gathering tools are providing companies with a flood of new data containing valuable information about the customer base. Effectively analysing this data is a challenge on its own, and all too often one that is overlooked. One ends up with a “dog chasing car” scenario. Once the data has been captured, what do we do with it? Luckily, there are some very handy tools to assist with this dilemma. Investing in a tool that helps organise display this data in a way that is convenient and understandable is just as important as investing in a tool that helps you gather that data.
A good business intelligence tool helps convert masses of data into understandable information that can be accessed easily. Here are a few things to consider when looking at business intelligence (BI) tools which can help you make sense of your data:
- Visualisations: The BI tool should allow information to be displayed in a variety of convenient visualizations, such as bar, line and pie chart types. Multiple visualizations should be able to be displayed on one screen.
- Data selection: The BI tool should allow the users to select data used in analysis and present it as a pivot table-style interface.
- Data Filters: The BI tool should allow information to be filtered by data values. Filters should allow users to drill down to very detailed data and then move back to a more general overview of that data.
- Reporting: The BI tool should allow automated reports, containing visualisations, to be generated and delivered to specific users.