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Business intelligence software adds considerable value to business environments in which complex streams of data must converge in order to be analyzed and used. CRM systems, ERP systems, inventory management systems and more all provide a high volume of data. A good business intelligence system such as Sage Intelligence can take that data and make it easy for decision-makers to understand and use. Sage Intelligence offers an Excel-based method of sourcing, integrating, and manipulating data so that it can inform decisions. Sage Enterprise Intelligence is web-based. Companies using business intelligence tools are 5x more likely to make swift decisions, possibly because they have the data they need at their fingertips to empower them to make choices. The Benefits of Business Intelligence Software There are many benefits of using business intelligence software. More accurate forecasts: With better business data, you can forecast sales and manufacturing needs closer to actual. This tightens up your processes and helps to eliminate wasteful spending. Better decisions: Accurate, timely data feeding into a business intelligence system can help you make better decisions throughout your company. When you have confidence in your data, you have confidence in your decisions. Tighter alignment with the market: Confidence in sales […]

You can improve your business intelligence presentations to executives, directors, peers, and subordinates by using tips and techniques found in the world of education. Many people are unfamiliar with the term “learning styles” but understanding this core concept and applying it to your presentation techniques will help you deliver better presentations that resonate with your audience. What Are Learning Styles? Educational theorists created a system of learning styles to describe the ways in which people prefer to learn. Your learning style is innate, and you probably recognize your own style in the descriptions below. Most people have a predominant style that they naturally gravitate towards when engaged in self-directed learning. Because the Western school system is heavily auditory (lecture-based) and visual (textbooks), many people who are kinesthetic or tactile learners learned early on to compensate by relying heavily on their secondary preference. No matter what your preference, there’s no one right or wrong way to learn. The three basic learning styles are described as: Auditory: Auditory learners need to hear information to process it. They understand business intelligence most during your presentation and retain information best when it is spoken aloud. Visual: Visual learners learn best by seeing information in […]

At IWI Consulting, we want your business intelligence programs to be successful. BI is more than software; it’s a way of thinking about your business. To help you make your business intelligence projects a smashing success, we’ve put together a resource for you. Better Visibility, Extraordinary Decision Support: In this paper, you’ll gain additional insights and tips for using business intelligence to uncover data and insights to drive better decisions. Seven Tips to Make Your BI Program a Smashing Success Implementing any new business technology can be challenging. There’s a learning curve as people get used to the new technology and, no matter how simple and user-friendly the technology, people do need time to get used to it. Others may find themselves overwhelmed with the riches of information now available through good business intelligence systems. If you’re among either camp, or you’re in charge of implementing a new business intelligence solution for your company, the following seven tips will help you get your new business intelligence project off the ground and running: Leverage existing information and structures: Your new BI system should have integrated with existing structures such as your ERP system. You can leverage existing training resources, templates, reports, […]

A new white paper from IWI Consulting, “Great Visibility and Better Business Decisions,” provides details on how businesses can transform their decision-making processes through the use of data derived from systems such as Sage Business Intelligence. Sage Business Intelligence draws information from Sage 300 and Sage ERP X3, tying multiple databases together into one robust system. The result can break down department silos, as the report states, improve productivity and efficiency, and increase your profits. Why Do Silos Occur in Business? Business silos are something with which many people are familiar. Departments cling to their data and make others run circles to access it. In other scenarios, the data exists, but only one or two people know how to run the specific system to access it. The resulting information bottlenecks can throw off schedules, decrease productivity, and derail efforts at creating data-driven cultures. Silos can be a result of poor technology infrastructure as well as people’s emotions and psyches invested in their role as gatekeeper over information. Some people subtly cling to older systems because their ability to access data gives them power in an organization. Others simply don’t know that alternatives exist. If your company has always operated in […]

Many companies seek to become “data-driven” enterprises. Business intelligence solutions can be an integral part of a data-driven culture. Their user-friendliness ensures that even the “non techie” people in your organization can learn how to use them for maximum benefit. Creating a Data-Driven Culture Many companies in the manufacturing area are transforming how they make decisions. Changing towards a data-driven culture may not be easy, but business intelligence solutions can make it easier. The right business intelligence solutions combine accurate data, real-time updates, and simple dashboards that make logical sense for even novices to navigate. Such dashboards enable everyone—at all levels of the organization—to find, use, and understand the data inputted into the system. To create a data-driven culture, data must not only be freely available to all, but it must be easy to use. Without ease of use, data remains untapped. Priority must be given to installing systems that work well for the majority of users. Weaning Users Away from Spreadsheets Many businesses have used spreadsheets to capture, analyze, and manipulate data. Spreadsheets are readily available, easy to use, and inexpensive. However, they lack the power that business intelligence solutions provide, and are open to mistakes. Most spreadsheets require […]

If you’ve shied away from ERP systems because of rumors that their business intelligence solutions were too complex, it’s time to re-evaluate that concept. Today’s business intelligence solutions easily transform multiple data sources from throughout your company into meaningful information. A new white paper from IWI Consulting offers additional insights into the application and use of ERP systems for business intelligence. Embedded Business Intelligence Solutions Newer systems embed business intelligence solutions within the framework of the system. This makes it much easier to aggregate multiple data sources and run reports specific to your needs. Such reports can take a “big picture” view and report on factors from different areas within the company. According to the new white paper offered by IWI Consulting, the top applications embedded in business intelligence solutions include: Enterprise resource planning (ERP) Customer relationship management (CRM) Financial and accounting systems Supply chain management Marketing automation Among these types of software, BI is most frequently paired with ERP solutions. Studies indicate that businesses who use a combined, integrated ERP and business intelligence solution are on average twice as likely to gain real-time insights into the status of all business processes. This is a boon for business efficiency, productivity, […]

Many business owners seek a competitive advantage through better business intelligence. Business intelligence solutions, such as Sage Enterprise Intelligence can provide you with big-picture data of your organization’s performance. Such data enhances your ability to make timely, accurate, and judicious decisions. These decisions aren’t limited to the big picture, however. Every portion of your business, from the warehouse floor to the manufacturing area, benefits. The more data your managers have, the better they can do their jobs. There are many surprising benefits to be derived from the implementation of new business intelligence solutions. Sage commissioned Forrester Research to analyze data from a representative sample of companies on their implementation of Sage ERP X3. The resulting analysis showed abundant benefits and cost-savings. Some, however, were surprising. Three Surprising Benefits from the Implementation of Sage X3 and Enterprise Intelligence There are dozens of benefits your company gains from implementing business intelligence solutions. But three surprising areas include: Automating compliance Improving processes Enhancing availability of data. Automating compliance: Many companies have stringent approval processes over items such as discounts, price breaks, returns, and other areas that directly impact the bottom line. Workers, however, find themselves chasing down managers for approvals, sending myriad reminder […]

It can be hard to make sense of the dollars and cents, numbers and figures flowing from your company’s business intelligence solutions. When manufacturers were asked about areas where they invested in technology and the potential return on investment, one area stood out: business intelligence. Among those surveyed, collecting business insights was the number one priority for investment. For the 76 percent of manufacturers who made the investment into new software to collect business insights, an astonishing 100 percent saw an improvement. Anytime you see every manufacturer in a survey agreeing on something, it’s important to take note. When everyone agrees that investing in software to collect business insights does indeed improve business, it makes sense to explore it as an option. Manufacturing businesses face similar challenges no matter what products they make. Reducing the costs of overhead and raw materials, forecasting demand, increasing sales, and improving customer service are concerns shared by companies making everything from automotive parts to cardboard boxes. But one thing stands out: no matter what the problem, the solution lies in gaining deeper insights into existing business processes, and making sound decisions based on facts. You can accomplish this by including business intelligence solutions in […]

The right business intelligence software can unlock opportunities for manufacturers. Sage X3 with Sage Enterprise Intelligence can help you collect and share business insights that drive decision-making. Opportunities Are All Around We often feel locked into our typical methods of conducting business simply because we’re focused on the daily needs of our companies. Manufacturers are especially keyed into daily sales quotas, supply chain demands, shipment needs, and so forth. It’s hard to take a step back and look at the big picture. Business intelligence software like Sage Enterprise Intelligence can change that paradigm. Using the data generated by different points within your company, Sage Enterprise Intelligence can share the data and help you make predictions about where to expand your company, how to grow it beyond current capacities, how to leverage customer relationships, and more. Sage Enterprise Intelligence can’t, by itself, make your business more responsive and profitable, but the right business intelligence software puts the right tools into the hands of your key team players. They can then use those tools to grow your company bigger and faster. Real-time data, provided to people with the experience, insight, and ability to use it to make decisions, can change how your […]

Nothing is more frustrating than promising a customer a product and finding out it’s out of stock … all because your inventory data is flawed or out of date. Worse still is telling a customer you’re out of stock on something when in fact you have plenty of it. Is it any wonder that businesses crave better inventory data? A new paper from Sage called Conducting a Cost-Benefit Analysis for ERP sheds light on the many benefits to consider when implementing an ERP solution. One of the many benefits is greater reliability. Accurate, timely business data is critical to all departments in your organization, but perhaps it is most critical to the inventory and fulfillment centers. Without accurate data, they can’t fulfill customer orders quickly. They may erroneously report information to sales or manufacturing. These errors can multiply, causing cost overruns, duplicate stock, and excess warehouse space taken up with redundant products. Better Data Leads to Faster Shipping Times Consider your company’s data needs when it comes to shipping times. Integrated systems that can share ordering, warehouse, and fulfillment data can provide an accurate picture of possible shipping times. Customers rely upon this information to predict their own business needs. […]