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BI, Analytics & Reporting

- 3 min read

Corporate Management Digitalization through BI & Analytics

This article is the first in a series of three blogs exploring the theme of Digital Decision Support. 

The digitalization of corporate management and governance is a major challenge for many companies today. A fully digitalized infrastructure through data-driven processes and the use of modern software applications for business intelligence (BI) and analytics is still often purely wishful thinking. This applies to companies of all industries and sizes and to all departments. All too often, everyday work is still characterized by time and resource-consuming manual activities that leave little time for value-adding tasks. However, increasing demands on speed, agility, and foresight, new strategic data usage targets, and high expectations among executives regarding the degree of automation of management processes demonstrate the need to forge ahead with the digital transformation of corporate management and governance.

Faster, data-centric decisions based on digitalized processes

Quick, data-centric, automated, and forward-looking planning and management are essential requirements for any business in the digital age. The top priorities pursued by organizations in the context of their own digital transformation are (see figure 1):

  • an accelerated supply of information for decision-makers to make faster, informed decisions based on data,
  • the increasing consideration of internal and external data for decision-making in order to have a sound basis for decisions, and
  • the digitalization of own internal processes as an essential basis for their optimization as well as potential automation.

Figure 1: Top priorities pursued by companies in the area of performance management in the
 context of digitalization (source: BARC study “Corporate Performance Management in the Age of Digitalization”, n=209)


Data and analytics – an essential basis for digital corporate management

The increasing demands of digital corporate management and governance are making companies more aware of their need to evolve into data-driven organizations. This includes a comprehensive awareness of the relevance of data for their own corporate management and competitiveness. Data, and the use thereof, is indispensable:

  • for optimizing and automating processes,
  • for making informed decisions or
  • for improving products and services as well as
  • for supporting new business models.

The derivation of completely new findings from data is a key capability in the context of digital transformation. BI and analytics are essential prerequisites for this.

However, the availability of large amounts of data in data lakes or the like (big data) alone is nowhere near enough to create a competitive advantage. Data is only of value to companies if it is available at the right time, in the right quality, and in a format capable of providing fast analysis for decision-making. “Data intelligence” is therefore crucial to success. If this is present, the digital transformation represents a real opportunity for companies.

BI and analytics are an inevitable condition for data-driven decisions. The development of competencies in the field of data analytics, as well as the improved integration of performance management processes in integrated, professional software solutions, are consequently central to many digitalization efforts in companies (see also figure 1).

BI and analytics are therefore crucial success factors for digital transformation as well as data-driven corporate management and governance. Companies see greater potential for improvement in those performance management processes that are of significant importance for their own success in the context of digitalization. These include, in particular, processes related to reporting/analysis, operational planning, and strategy management (see figure 2). The focus of anticipated optimization potential is the improvement of the respective processes themselves, that is, for example, their end-to-end digitalization as the basis for better integration and automation.

Figure 2: For which performance management processes do you see potential for improvement within your company in the context of digitalization? (source: BARC study “Corporate Performance Management in the Age of Digitalization”, n=207)

Summary and outlook

Increasing demands on speed, agility, and foresight are forcing companies to forge ahead with the digitalization of their own corporate management and governance. A comprehensive awareness of the relevance of data and the increased use of BI and analytics are essential prerequisites. “Data intelligence” is crucial when it comes to ensuring that data is available at the right time, in the right quality, and in a format capable of providing fast analysis for decision-making. Check out the second part of this blog series, where you can find out what modern corporate management looks like under the requirements of digitalization and what competences are necessary.

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Check out the second blog in the Digital Decision Support series which discusses the digital competences required to make the transition to a data-driven decision-making culture.