Data-Warehousing for Small & Medium Enterprises (SMEs)
- Does your organisation struggle every month to produce the board reports?
- Do you spend value time in the board meeting comparing and questioning numbers?
- Does it take repeated and ongoing manual effort in a spreadsheet rife with VLOOKUPS to undertake analysis to better understand your organisation’s performance?
If you answered yes to any or all of the above questions or your data querying looks like image above, it may be time to consider investing in a better reporting architecture. Think about the effort spent compiling, manipulating, calculating and checking, then re-checking your reports, and how that effort might be better spent.
“…while it is true that there is a need to invest funds to develop a data warehouse, it may not be as expensive as one might expect in 2014”
There are many software packages that produce fantastic dashboards, reports and charts, however they commonly don’t achieve their full potential without the support of a purpose built reporting database, often referred to as a data-warehouse.
The case for a Data-Warehouse
So… what is a data-warehouse? In short, it’s a purpose built database that is designed to serve the analytical needs of the organisation. These platforms bring together data sets from disparate and non-structured systems such as Finance, CRM and Call Logging systems into a unified view allowing fast, adhoc drag’n’drop style querying and analysis to end users.
Smaller organisations may have considered that undertaking such a strategic initiative is solely the domain of larger organisations citing prohibitive development cost. While it is true that there is a need to invest funds to develop a data warehouse, it may not be as expensive as one might expect in 2014. Especially when weighed up against the ongoing and increasing cost of labour resources required to deal with the issues described above.
“…the risk of numbers being transposed, lost or miscalculated can be even more costly as reports may be used to make critical business decisions”
SMEs understand the need to operate more efficiently due to their size, and can therefore be better served having their finance and business analysts actually analyse trusted information to reveal insights instead of being expensive data collecting and collating resources. In addition, the risk of numbers being transposed, lost or miscalculated can be even more costly as reports may be used to make critical business decisions.
Successful Outcomes for SMEs
QMetrix has seen interest in data-warehouses steadily increase amongst smaller sized organisations over the last few years as businesses are increasingly using data to reveal more as well as taking advantage of competitively priced and mature data warehousing and reporting technologies.
“…identifying a few current reporting pain points and resolving them through a small data-warehouse doesn’t need to be costly – the business can continue to invest and grow the warehouse as new needs arise”
A successful and well-designed data-warehouse needs to deliver new functionality at regular intervals so the business can start to realise the benefits sooner. Identifying a few current reporting “pain points” and resolving them through a small data-warehouse doesn’t need to be costly – the business can continue to invest and grow the warehouse as new needs arise or as other priorities come into play.
In one example, QMetrix consultants implemented a data-warehouse solution using Microsoft SQL Server for mechanical services & construction organisation AE Smith who used the solution to understand and subsequently increase the profitability of their projects. As Darryl Kerrigan (The Castle) says, “just paid for itself”!
QMetrix consultants have implemented data-warehouses for a number of SME organisations through a ‘try before you buy’ Proof of Concept (POC) approach, helping them to realise the benefits it can provide before going ahead with a full implementation. QMetrix has worked for over a decade in BI and has often seen a solution’s success compromised by the lack of an adequate reporting database.
Call us on 1300 785 336 or email us to get in touch and learn how QMetrix can help your organisation suffering with reliable reporting issues.