Analytics are the radar that guide the actions of your Company. When properly developed, Analytics monitor all aspects of your internal performance and compare them to external market and environmental measures in a format that leads to specific action. They can be as simple as a report that compares actual sales versus Budget, or as complex as real-time regression analysis that updates a company-wide finance or logistics optimization model. Analytics has four components:
Tranform data from multiple sources to meet a single, consistent standard that fits the fundamental requirements of the task at hand. Look to external, third-party data souces for guidance.
In some cases, Users can derive their own summary measures. However, smoothing, filtering, error trapping, statistics, and any calculation used across the organization should be provided for them.
By default, provide a rich set of presentation graphics. Comparing new results with prior relationships will highlight problem areas. Certain cases will benefit from advanced reporting, such as: mangement dashboards, active drilldown reports, geographic mapping, response surfaces, and multi-dimensional representation.
Model Your Business or Market
Assembling individual relationships into integrated models of your organization and markets will allow you to identify sensitivities, optima, incremental profitability, and internal constraints. This dramatically improves the depth of "what if" analysis of your strategic planning.
Use Nextep to develop a mix of Analytics that fits your budget. We normally recommend a multi-tiered approach to Analytic tools. Many needs can be satisfied using fixed reports and simple software (such as Microsoft Excel). However, every organization has environments in which advanced tools provide huge benefits because they highlight solutions that were invisible before.