In this article, we’ll explore the significance of support in management of your Business Intelligence and Corporate Performance Management tools.
When trying to sort out the specific types of assistance that professional services, support, and training offer in ownership and management of a Business Intelligence (BI) and/or Corporate Performance Management (CPM) tool, I found myself confused. When, where, and how do these three different services show up in the customer journey of purchase to ownership? To zoom in, is a support package important – if not essential – to successfully managing your BI and CPM software? This article will discuss the important element of support in maximizing the return on your investment.
I contacted a support professional to get a clearer picture of the service, which helped a ton – and he explained each service in the context of each other, while also spotlighting his role. My pal, Nick, has been working in a BI/CPM software support capacity for 3-4 years, and he compared these three entities and how they interact in such an easy-to-understand way. He used the analogy of comparing a BI/CPM product to a car. The software is produced by the independent software vendor (ISV), just like a vehicle is manufactured in a factory. Next, customizations and how-to instructions are delivered by a consultant, which enables you to get familiar with your new financial reporting, budgeting, dashboards, and/or data warehousing tool, similar to what you would get from the auto dealership – that exchange where the car goes from being inventory on the lot to your vehicle.
Consulting aims to get you up to speed on your BI/CPM solution(s). Consultants dive into your specific business objectives and match them with the feature and functionality offerings of the tool you purchased. Their familiarity with the product runs deeper than knowing where on your car the gas tank is, so they help you and your team by showing you around the product and connecting your data sources to the tool for your requisite analyses.
Training empowers end users with deeper product knowledge. Think about owning your automobile for a year without ever knowing how to configure the Bluetooth functionality. The initial consulting on the car was thorough and great, but consultants bill you per hour for the time working with you. Training continues your product exploration through hands-on exercises, with ad-hoc learning sessions at times about a specific feature, function, or module. Training falls under the umbrella of consulting or professional services, but is usually in a group setting, transmitting information from trainer to users. Consulting, however, is a project-specific partnership and a conversation that results in moving toward an end goal.
To learn more about the importance of support in BI and CPM solution management,