What is Business Intelligence & Why Does It Matter for Call Centers?
Business intelligence (BI) empowers business users to glean valuable insights from data using agile self-service programs without requiring IT intervention. Understanding your company’s valuable data can take the guesswork out of decision-making, improve coordination between departments, and help align core business initiatives.
This article will help you understand the basics of BI and why it needs to be a priority for your organization.
What is Business Intelligence (BI)?
When you hear the term Business Intelligence or (BI) it often is in reference to the leveraging of software and services to transform data into actionable insights as an umbrella term.
These insights are intended to become part of an organization’s strategic decision-making.
BI tools take data sets and analytical findings that are found in reports, summaries, dashboards, graphics, and maps to then provide businesses with detailed intelligence about the inner workings of their business.
The working definition of Business intelligence (BI) is the combination of business analytics, data mining, data visualization, data tools and infrastructure, and best practices to help organizations make informed by data-driven decisions.
Essentially BI is the value that is generated for anyone with a deeper understanding of the data of their business.
Traditional BI vs Modern BI: What’s the Difference?
Business intelligence was first introduced as a term in the late 1950s when IBM researcher Hans Peter Luhn published “A Business Intelligence System”. Luhn defined BI as “the ability to apprehend the interrelationships of presented facts in such a way as to guide action towards a desired goal.”
In the early days of software development and programming, the power of providing useful analytics was completely reliant on IT teams. They had the technical know-how and access to the data needed by decision-makers. This dynamic was a direct barrier to real-time reporting.
As technology developed and software developed, so did BI. Now the focus of Business Intelligence and BI Software is on self-serve analysis geared towards decision making through business intelligence reporting.
The ease of use of these BI tools is an important element of taking the burden off of software developers and IT employees to be gatekeepers of data for organizations. Organizations want to interact with agile, intuitive systems to analyze business data as quickly as possible to implement strategy effectively.
Business Intelligence Examples
Business intelligence and analytics have come quite a long way to meet the demands of an evolving technology landscape. Below are a few examples of the business intelligence solutions that are commonly utilized by companies.
Real-Time Business Intelligence
Real-time business intelligence (RTBI) is used to sort and analyze business data. Real-time BI allows organizations to gain insights into how the business operates as quickly as possible to take swift strategic action.
This element of BI is demanded when live business insight is required, which is not a rarity in the fast-paced environment of some industries including e-commerce and contact centers.
Using RTBI companies can create quick responses to real-time trends across departments and overall communication channels.
An example of this in action would be RTBI helping to create special offers at the most suitable time possible to get the highest conversion rate like offering a “limited time offer” when a prospective customer is on your website.
As business intelligence and methodology become integrated for a company it is important to understand the various sources for data. Having diverse data options including raw data, internal and external data all give a fuller picture for analysis.
It is fairly common for companies to store huge amounts of operational data. BI needs to navigate between the data sources. Mainframe legacy systems create a foundation for the data centers as they can deal with large volumes of data. However, that data is usually difficult to procure since many legacy apps are proprietary or obsolete.
Some great operational data sources to take advantage of are:
- Enterprise Resource Planning – Includes a large amount of transaction data, to be used in BI environments.
- CRM (Customer Relationship Management) – A wonderful source of data for BI as CRM systems such as SalesForce, Zoho, or Hubspot store and analyze customer behavior and important data.
- E-Commerce Apps – Apps can be a great source of data for BI since they offer real-time sales activity and other important data points to measure.
- Some other sources are numerous company databases, flat files, web services (apps), RSS feeds, and more.
Online Analytical Processing (OLAP)
OLAP technology commonly is what is at play behind the majority of business intelligence applications. The primary goal of this data discovery as well as capabilities for report viewing, complex calculations for analytics, and assistance with “what if” scenario planning.
OLAP analyzes business information in a multi-dimensional manner to assist with complex calculations, trend analysis, and data modeling.
Companies that have a desire to keep their data in one place to get an accurate and reliable understanding of the various aspects of their data can do that with OLAP.
Why Does Your Call Center Need Business Intelligence Solutions?
Contact centers are complex business operations where understanding human behavior is a cornerstone of understanding the hard, raw data that comes out of these ecosystems. Contact center managers are constantly trying to anticipate, identify, and problem-solve around the following pain points:
- How to gauge agent productivity
- How to effectively time manage their agents
- How agent satisfaction translates into customer satisfaction
- How to minimize process deficiencies to improve functionality
- How to manage attrition especially in a restricted labor market
- How to encourage communication and collaboration amongst teams
- How to identify top talent or underperforming agents
- How to gather customer feedback for quality control and continuous improvement
- How to identify areas where costs can be reduced
These multidimensional conversations are typically occurring at the exact same time from a management perspective. All of these conversations are made easier to navigate with the proper methodologies and insights that are made possible by business intelligence tools and business analytics solutions. BI tools can help your contact center managers:
- Gain in-depth knowledge about your customer’s journey
- Benchmark your customer data for future projections
- Align your business activities with strategy
- Understand critical business questions
- Boost internal productivity
- Implement effective customer-centric campaigns
- Retain and train your employees
Brightmetrics’ Business Intelligence Services
Brightmetrics™ offers dynamic, real time reporting call center business intelligence software. We enable your team to gain critical insights into the performance of your contact center by identifying key performance indicators and metrics, and how they directly impact your customers’ experience.
Our tools are easy to use with self-service menus. Everyone at your organization from your agents to your Executive Leadership can use the intuitive drag and drop capabilities of Brightmetrics™ to build functional contact center reports and dashboards to transform raw data into actionable insights.
Brightmetrics™ offers fully customizable dashboards and reports to fit your call center’s unique needs regardless of industry. Ecommerce? We have a solution for that. Healthcare? We do that too. Our BI software is flexible so that our clients can easily integrate with our solutions.
We are designed to help your business operations obtain powerful information from high-level trends to the nitty-gritty details to optimize your business. We help drive intelligent business decisions through an understanding of the numbers behind your business.
Key Takeaways on B. I.
Understanding how to properly use BI tools can vastly improve your businesses’ growth and development efforts. Business intelligence and analytics are constantly evolving and improving upon the functionalities of understanding data as it relates to business.
Finding the right BI software to accomplish your goals is instrumental to getting the data you need to make strategic decisions that will help you stay ahead of your competition.
Business Intelligence harnesses the power of data to improve your speed, reliability, navigation, processes, and presentation both internally as well as externally.
FAQs Related to Business Intelligence Systems
What Are the 7 Basic Tasks of Business Intelligence?
There are several basic tasks of business intelligence, but the seven most common basic takes of business intelligence include:
- Helping an organization collect helpful data
- Prepare insights for analysis used in strategic planning
- Develop and conduct database inquiries
- Compiling reports
- Business performance management
- Complex event or campaign monitoring
Does Business Intelligence Need Coding?
It can! It really depends on a few factors like what data sources you are looking to potentially integrate. If your database contains everything you are trying to utilize already most of the programming will come down to SQL queries.
If you are looking to integrate hosted or cloud-based data services, those require programming scripts to interface with APIs.
What do you want to do with your data? Historical reporting is going to require far less programming or setup than doing trend analysis or future forecasting.
What tools are you using to display your data? Tableau or Qlik require minimal effort vs Microsoft Stack or Excel that would do most of the work.
What is a Business Intelligence Analyst?
Business intelligence (BI) analysts are individuals whose role is to transform data into actionable insights that drive business value.
These individuals use data analytics, data visualization, and data modeling techniques and technologies in their work. BI professionals help identify trends that are used throughout the organization to improve processes and expand the functionality of data.
Business Intelligence analysts are becoming increasingly important to organizations as companies try to capitalize on the value of their data.
What Are the Stages of Business Intelligence?
The stages of business intelligence typically include four primary stages:
- Data gathering
- Data cleaning
Before BI gets to the “data gathering” stage in the process it is important to define goals and determine stakeholder objectives so that you understand what data is most important. Sometimes pre-work includes interviewing managers to understand process deficiencies or doing an internal audit. Understanding the starting point of the project can be one of the most vital steps to ensure success!