Introduction and Background Information
The business environment is constantly changing. Technology and data have changed how organizations make decisions, work on operational effectiveness and efficiencies and work towards achieving better productivity. Business intelligence, one of the technological innovations in the modern age, is a technology- driven application through which large datasets can be analyzed and presents actionable information that can be used by corporate end users, managers and executives to make evidence-based, insightful and informed organizational decisions.
Chen, Chiang and Storey (2018) and Sharda, Delen and Turban (2016) implore that business intelligence covers a wide variety and range of tools, methodologies and applications that can enable business executives and employers collect data from their internal systems and external sources; prepare the data for expert analysis; develop and run questions against the analyzed data; create interactive dashboards and reports and visualizations for corporate-level decision making. Simply defined, business intelligence allows business executives and technical experts to analyze data using different techniques to support decision making processes in the business.
What is being referred to as business intelligence tools went through a lot of evolution from before, most of the time mainframe-based analytical processes and systems, like executive information platforms and decision support systems (Chen, Chiang & Storey, 2018). Sharda, Delen and Turban (2016) demonstrate, through its tools and techniques, that business intelligence is does not just look at abstract data that cannot be understood by the business.
The focus is to create simple interactive dashboards and reports which can offer a visualization for insightful decision making. Since the modern workplace and marketplace is competitive, business executives need tools and systems that can offer fast but accurate decisions which are informed by data and vital information. Business intelligence systems and tools offer such a platform. For this project, we look at Lion net, a business intelligence platform that is used to improve human resource management and other functions that will be described in the paper.
Why is business intelligence vital for leadership success of the corporation?
Two research studies, one by Richards, Yeoh, Chong and Popovič (2017); and another one by Laursen and Thorlund (2016) describe how business intelligence can be used to improve corporate performance management beyond simply reporting numbers. These two research studies document how managers and business executives can use business intelligence tools to improve decision making and for corporate management success. The platform suggested for this paper, Lion net, is one tool that can impact decision making for management and improvement of human resources.
Laursen and Thorlund (2016) explain that business today live in the age of information and information can be very powerful. The sad fat however is, business executives and corporate managers are most times buried under tonnes of information. Making sense of such massive information is extremely difficult without the use of special tools and techniques. For most small-scale businesses, the adoption of business intelligence has been rather slow because of lack of adequate knowledge on what the platform is capable of achieving. The truth however is, business intelligence should be a critical and integral part of any organizational operation.
Boosting productivity, as elaborated by Richards, Yeoh, Chong and Popovič (2017), is important for any business. Data collection and gathering using the old techniques and methods, analyzing the data and writing detailed reports can be very challenging, time consuming and cumbersome. In some cases, having enough staff to put in extra hours for such analysis can pose challenges. However, using business intelligence tools and applications, a business executive can pull tonnes of data and create reports by simply clicking on a button.
As such, time and vital resources are freed up, allowing the staff to be more productive on other roles. Schulz, Winter and Choi (2015) stress on the need to gain sales and insightful market intelligence in the modern competitive marketplace. The authors argue that, whether someone is a sales person or for a sales and marketing department, keeping track of the customers using a platform like customer relationship management can be of significant help (Laursen & Thorlund, 2016). Having a CRM solution is helpful in collecting data about the customers and making sense of the data, presents the data in easily understood tables and charts that can then be used to make important decisions going forward.
Information retrieved from such solution can help make decisions on the entire sales period, the number of new customers, and how existing customers can be serviced and tracked (Laursen & Thorlund, 2016). Further, the business intelligence platform can help understand consumer behavior. One of the major strengths of using business intelligence is that business executives are capable of boosting their abilities to analyze the current buying trends as demonstrated by customers. Once the business executive understand what the customers are buying, he or she can use the data and information to develop products that match the current market consumption trends.
As such, correct products reach the customers and the company increases its profitability. Laursen and Thorlund (2016) remark that return on investment is a long term target for using business intelligence tools and platforms in different organizational processes. Having an efficiently running business intelligence system in an organization improves strategic awareness, increases the speed and accuracy of reporting, and decreases operational costs and hence the return on investment is positively influenced. Most business leaders always want to gain better visibility of different projects and processes in the organization (Chen, Chiang & Storey, 2018).
For such leaders, business intelligence improves their visibility of these projects and processes and help them identify issues or areas that needs to be improved. How can abstract data be transformed into actionable information? Business intelligence systems, as analytical tools, can give business executives the insight needed to make successful and significant strategic plans for the organizations (Laursen & Thorlund, 2016). Why? Because business intelligence systems are capable of identifying key trends and patterns in the organization’s data and consequently make it easier for business leaders to make vital links between different business areas that may otherwise seem unconnected or unrelated.
Developing efficient systems is important to achieve the levels of productivity and performance required especially at top levels (Richards, Yeoh, Chong & Popovič, 2017). Today, there are countless organizations that are throwing away important time looking for information from within their varied sources of data when a need to gain a deeper and insightful understanding of the business is important.
Looking for data from multiple sources can he highly challenging. With an efficient and effective business intelligence system well in place, all the required data comes from a single source and can be accessed from one interactive dashboard which then creates a single report (Richards, Yeoh, Chong & Popovič, 2017). This strategy saves much energy and time whole eliminating inefficiencies from the systems and processes.
The New Business Intelligence Platform: Lion net
The proposed business intelligence platform incorporated for the organization is called Lion net. The major focus of the Lion net business intelligence platform is improving the human resources department. In this section, the paper describes how the business intelligence platform will be used to improve management of human resources. As mentioned before, business intelligence combines people skills, business processes, applications and technologies to make better tactical and strategic business decisions.
The applications and technologies encompass data management methods for collecting, planning, storing and structuring vital data into data warehouses and analytical roles for reporting and creating visual dashboards. Apart from human resource functions that Lion net adoption and implementation would be significant for, it has other capabilities like the ability to submit rewards, personnel actions like requesting for schools and promotions.
Lion net Platform for Hiring and Tracking Data
The same indicators that are using in measuring the performance of the business or the buying patterns can also be used in measuring the fitness of employees to a specified role. Most HR personnel have a specified set of qualities or attributes they are looking for in prospective employee candidates (Dias & Sousa, 2015). And then the interviewers provide the platforms that HR personnel can use to collect data. Some of the important qualities can be in the form of knowledge on products, average time spent on social media, interpersonal skills, leadership skills, attitude and other qualities (Dias & Sousa, 2015).
Decision on recruiting the best candidate largely depends on how human resource managers perceive the data analysis. As a business intelligence platform, Lion net can be smartly implemented to provide detailed and analytical information which help human resource personnel make well informed evidence-based decision making (Dias & Sousa, 2015). For instance, the time of a job candidate spent on Facebook and other platforms for social media could either be categorized into weakness or strength depending on what role the candidate is being considered for.
Being a solid and effective business intelligence platform, Lion net helps analyze the important attributes, conduct comparisons on different candidates on all the listed qualities and give the most suitable fit for the role (Dias & Sousa, 2015). The least fit maybe identified easily, but it takes a little more work to identify the most qualified fit. For most HR managers, the challenge comes in from how the right individual should be chosen at the right cost for the right roles because the most of the candidates will be appearing somewhere between the middle and high range of a bar graph for instance (Dias & Sousa, 2015). This is where the business intelligence platform discussed here come in to make the most qualified candidate through well informed decision making.
Lion net platform and retention of current staff
Lion net is one of the best and clever business intelligence platforms in the market today. If well adopted and implemented, the tool is capable of learning about the business and its staff over time and presents the human resource department with possible predictions which will affect how decisions are made in the future. Dias and Sousa (2015) explains that there is often a complex chain and web of information that goes into the management of a strong and healthy human resource department in any business.
The complex chain of information includes recruitment and selection process, the salaries, performance management appraisals, key performance indicators, promotions, relocations, retentions, firing of staff, the estimated cost of living and many others. Being a clever business intelligence platform, Lion net helps analyze all these information on a continuous and ongoing basis, determine the levels of employee satisfaction and potentially predict how long some members of the staff will serve within the business.
Conducting an analysis of performance management and appraisals and employee key performance indicators can show the skill to role fit for individual employees and determine the most productive staff. For the HR department, this platform allows corrective measures to be taken at the right time and hence valuable time and costs are saved for the organization. Dias and Sousa (2015) reiterate that businesses often perform at the highest level when all the staff own their respective roles and work in well-oiled and functional teams, with each team depending on the other.
A good illustration example would be an orchestra. For a group of musicians in an orchestra arrangement to produce an incredible show of music, all the various individual musical artists must know the whole piece and play their respective roles, just in time. If the whole piece is ignored by a single musician, the entire performance can be potentially ruined. In the same way, a business runs and functions best when all the staff are made aware of the big picture on a continuous basis irrespective of their individual responsibilities (Dias & Sousa, 2015).
As such, employees should be allowed to access a generic performance dashboard with respect to their business progress or even at the level of departmental progress in the face of strategic objectives, revenue goals and organizational policies can be highly motivational (Dias & Sousa, 2015). The non-management employees, with this approach, would feel as part of the business strategic decision making teams and gain a lot of respect for the organization.
Lion net platform and compensation analysis, finance actions
Dias and Sousa (2015) and Sharda, Delen and Turban (2016) explain that when it comes to finance actions and compensation analysis for personnel, most business executives often rely on very simple and basic information like a certain industry average. In some instances, the level of employee commitment and skills during a performance management can be used in making such vital decisions (Sharda, Delen, D & Turban, 2016). In rare cases do most managers rely on more advanced and insightful data analytics that allow visualization of the impact of these personnel finance and compensation choices?
This is where Lion net, the robust, clever and insightful business intelligence tool comes in with a lot of significance. The platform delivers greater insight of potential impact to the finance officers and the HR management team. Further, evaluation of team performance versus the rewards could potentially keep the business from losing its most talented staff to the market competition (Sharda, Delen, D & Turban, 2016). If smartly adopted and implemented, the Lion net business intelligence platform allows the managers to foresee several “what if” scenarios through tracking past and future data (Sharda, Delen, D & Turban, 2016).
What does this mean for human resource department teams? Since it tracks data that informs decision making from a financial front, the Lion net platform allows the human resource lead to propose compensation or benefit ranges and see the impact on business from a financial viewpoint when compared to predicted or forecasted future revenue. This is close to perfect! The human resource manager does not just make finance actions or salary increment decisions based on scanty and basic data from the industry (Sharda, Delen, D & Turban, 2016).
Together with the business intelligence team, reliable and accurate data is used to determine what impact a salary rise would mean for the company at the present time and in future. Also, the compensation review is not done in isolation. The revision is combined with an analytics of the performance evaluations and key performance indicators. Through this platform, the human resource manager makes well-informed and insightful decisions on who should be rewarded and in the process the top talents are retained in the company (Richards, Yeoh, Chong & Popovič, 2017). Therefore, the Lion net serves two functions; it helps determine compensation revision based on performance reviews while also looking at the financial impact of those reviews at the present moment and forecasted future revenue.
Lion net platform and knowledge management
Knowledge management is the collection of systems and processes that govern how knowledge is created, disseminated and utilized. Knowledge management is not mostly on technology, but more on understanding ways in which people work, brainstorm, and identify people groups working together and how information can be shared to improve decision making and leadership of the organization (Chen, Chiang & Storey, 2018). As business intelligence platform, Lion net is important for knowledge management and sharing.
From a literal perspective, knowledge management has been struggling in most organizations because these firms most times try to implement massive enterprise-wide knowledge management processes and failed, and also because of the cumbersome nature involved in bringing together the several technologies and components associated with it (Chen, Chiang & Storey, 2018). The viability of knowledge management is largely because of the Lion net business intelligence platform.
How does the platform support knowledge management as an important component of human resource management? In most cases information retrieved from the platform is embedded in organizational portal web pages, spreadsheets, documents, important emails and presentations in managed data repositories (Sharda, Delen & Turban, 2016). When employees and other stakeholders receive vital information from the business intelligence platform, they are capable of using their knowledge or expertise in making decisions and taking significant actions.
The process of making decisions and taking actions may involve interaction between employees. Such interactions are supported by processing information and collaborative applications. When employees and executives make significant decisions and take bold actions they make use of their business acumen and knowledge in tying the actionable information to the organizational systems and processes they are responsible within the organizational role framework (Chen, Chiang & Storey, 2018). The ability of employees to relate vital information to business activities and processes is of great significance.
Based on business intelligence and the knowledge management integration, employees are capable of relating actionable information to business systems and processes that provide support for different functions across different departments other than the human resource department. However, for the Lion net platform to fully support the knowledge management environment or process, it must be effectively integrated with business process management, content management systems and business planning software (Chen, Chiang & Storey, 2018). As a business intelligence platform, Lion net offers online analytical processing, data mining and data warehousing functions that support how knowledge is acquire and shared across different departments.
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Dias, I., & Sousa, M. J. (2015). Business Intelligence applied to Human resources management. In New Contributions in Information Systems and Technologies (pp. 105-113). Springer, Cham.
Laursen, G. H., & Thorlund, J. (2016). Business analytics for managers: Taking business intelligence beyond reporting. John Wiley & Sons.
Richards, G., Yeoh, W., Chong, A. Y. L., & Popovič, A. (2017). Business intelligence effectiveness and corporate performance management: An empirical analysis. Journal of Computer Information Systems, 1-9.
Schulz, M., Winter, P., & Choi, S. K. T. (2015). On the relevance of reports—integrating an automated archiving component into a business intelligence system. International Journal of Information Management, 35(6), 662-671.
Sharda, R., Delen, D., & Turban, E. (2016). Business intelligence, analytics, and data science: a managerial perspective. Pearson.