How Important is Consulting in BI Solution Management?

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This article will discuss the importance of skilled consulting in getting the most ROI from your Corporate Performance Management and Business Intelligence tools.

More recently, I explored the necessity of Support in regard to ownership and management of a Corporate Performance (CPM) and/or Business Intelligence (BI) tool – and how that fits into the complete picture of professional services and training.  That article led to a bigger discussion of what consulting has to do with solution success.  What does an implementation look like with or without consulting?  Why is consulting such a significant, if not requisite piece of maximizing your BI and CPM solutions?  In this article, I’ll detail the importance of consulting in owning a modern analytics and management tool.

In order to understand the context of support, consulting, and training more, I contacted a friend who has been working with both BI and CPM solutions, which was pretty enlightening.  Stephanie, my consultant friend, has built a remarkable career in providing customized BI/CPM consulting services for a while now, and she explained her role in such an accessible way.  She pinpointed one of the more important elements of any consulting project is training in a more individualized way.  The purpose of training is to get each user to an expertise level where they’re confident building their own reports and dashboards within the solution, in addition to modifying and managing the platform, as the independent software vendor (ISV) has designed it.  Users should not have to depend on a team of experts or IT for any changes they need to make during regular workflow.

Picture taken from Pond5


When you get to more complicated reports and/or budget models, the consultant’s purpose is to make sure that everything is built according to design best practices, so that it is business user friendly and manageable.  A consultant will work side by side with you to discuss design requisites, catalogue data sources, pinpoint key upgrades to any established models, and thoroughly evaluate each template and integration before it’s deployed to production.  Consultants rely on experience and expertise, accumulated from hundreds of implementations with diverse consumer needs, representing many industries, and customize advice for you and your team, based on your solution objectives and their knowledge of the product.

But where does consulting fit into the bigger picture?  You can look at the tool in comparison with an automobile, from the factory to the consumer’s driveway.  The software tool is designed and produced by the ISV, just as a car is manufactured in a factory.  Then, consultants assist in learning how the solution can work for you and your organizational objectives, so you can leverage your new reporting, planning, dashboards, or data warehouse solution, much like how a vehicle goes from lot inventory to your garage.

If you would like to learn more about the importance of consulting in a BI or CPM solution implementation, click here.



By Solver,

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