Four Ways to Leverage Business Intelligence Across Your Enterprise

by | Dec 19, 2017

Gener­at­ing enter­prise insights that fuel effi­cient deci­sion making is a highly complex process that requires input from both man and machines. Opti­miz­ing data capture across disparate systems that reside in differ­ent func­tional areas of a busi­ness is a process-driven activ­ity that most compa­nies across all indus­tries have not tapped into. As a result busi­ness oppor­tu­ni­ties to stream­line produc­tiv­ity are being missed.

In this blog post, we discuss four ways manu­fac­tur­ing compa­nies can use busi­ness intel­li­gence and analyt­ics to improve the inter­play across produc­tion effi­ciency, product quality, customer demand, and service excel­lence.

1. Improve production, performance, and products

People who inti­mately under­stand data create the best dash­boards. These dash­boards typi­cally reside in Excel files and are tapes­tries woven from disparate data sources.

Today, it is possi­ble to run user-gener­ated, real-time dash­boards on top of cloud-based data manage­ment infra­struc­ture. This approach saves hours of time and increases the level of insight gleaned from data.

Here’s an example: In the dash­boards below, users can browse through filled orders and see how well the produc­tion ran by bring­ing together several data sets on a single dash­board. The scatter graph depicts the major metrics that affect produc­tion (setup, down­time, run speed). Note how the differ­ences in vari­ance trend between the two machines. Not only does it beg the ques­tion, “why is Machine 123 running better than Machine 456?” but it also shows the impact of the discrep­ancy in produc­tion cost, labor inef­fi­cien­cies, and customer satis­fac­tion.

Source: Tableau

2. Mobilize supply chains

Manu­fac­tur­ing data is constantly chang­ing but imme­di­ately rele­vant. Using data at the right time is vital to a more prof­itable oper­a­tion.

Mobile busi­ness intel­li­gence provides infor­ma­tion when and where it’s needed to make fast, busi­ness-crit­i­cal deci­sions.

Here’s an example: The Coca-Cola Bottling Co. Consol­i­dated (CCBCC), the largest inde­pen­dent Coca-Cola bottling firm in the US, has workers on the ground inter­act­ing and collab­o­rat­ing with visual dash­boards from anywhere—even truck drivers in differ­ent cities.

The CCBCC solved a huge bottle­neck in their supply chain, due to limited report avail­abil­ity, by provid­ing leaders and more than 800 employ­ees with daily dash­board updates on mobile devices.

3. React to customer feedback better and faster

In order to succeed in any indus­try, busi­nesses must under­stand, and act on, the desires and needs of the customer. Manu­fac­tur­ers need to collect customer data by listen­ing to many differ­ent chan­nels such as social media, call centers, and customer surveys.

When finding insights from customer infor­ma­tion, time to action is vital.

Here’s an example: Trane, a global leader in air condi­tion­ing systems and equip­ment, migrated from exclu­sively using spread­sheets to track customer service data to using inte­grated self-service data analyt­ics and visu­al­iza­tion. This change signif­i­cantly reduced the time taken to trans­form data into insights and, more impor­tantly, customer happi­ness.

We need to listen, and we need to inter­pret data. And we want to quickly react in two ways. We want to react directly by respond­ing to our customers. We also want to react as a busi­ness and strate­gi­cally deter­mine what is impor­tant to our customers.

Michael Nealy

Senior Customer Analyst, Trane

4. Sales force optimization

The ability to effi­ciently staff sales support teams is para­mount in today’s compet­i­tive envi­ron­ment. Creat­ing an enter­prise view of data assets fosters a culture of data-driven deci­sion making that reduces the cost of sales and increases sales produc­tiv­ity.

Further­more, an enter­prise view of data allows sales teams to clearly see poten­tial revenue by customer, product, and terri­tory.  Such clarity facil­i­tates data-driven deci­sion making that results in more effi­cient quotas, terri­tory assign­ment, sales align­ment and service demand.

There are many other ways busi­ness intel­li­gence can trans­form processes and drive tangi­ble busi­ness results in manu­fac­tur­ing. The most impor­tant thing is to ensure clear objec­tives are set, data is thor­oughly cleansed, and all inte­gra­tions are pris­tine. With these things in place busi­nesses are primed to apply data analyt­ics and busi­ness intel­li­gence method­olo­gies that glean accu­rate insights and drive tangi­ble results.

If you want to learn more and take advan­tage of Search Discovery’s exper­tise, get in touch today!