Since the 1980s, corporations have been capitalizing on the techniques of business process reengineering. The underlying approach was simple yet dramatic – use up-to-date computing and communications to share business information more widely and thus cut across functional silos, eliminate handoffs and errors, coordinate better, reduce costs and raise performance. At its best, reengineering entailed the fundamental redesign of end-to-end business processes to take better advantage of both human and technological capabilities.
Today, leading corporations are capitalizing on the techniques of business analytics to achieve new breakthroughs in process performance. With the help of up-to-date technology, they use business information differently – discovering previously invisible connections and patterns, getting a handle on the true keys of performance, developing new metrics, and managing processes (and across processes) more effectively. Some are reengineering again to take even better advantage of human and technological capabilities, especially the ability to make informed decisions.
The next wave of business reengineering is being powered by business analytics, and the potential for performance breakthroughs are just as large as they were 15 or so years ago. Many of these breakthroughs will come through the ability to integrate the demand side of the house with the supply side of the house as never before. Even information-rich industries have tended to concentrate on one side or the other. With the power of business analytics, corporations can make and manage the demand-supply connections – a big step closer to the goal of optimizing the performance of the corporation as a whole.
This paper, based on research by nGenera Corporation, covers topics such as where business analytics should be leveraged, why it is important to do so now, what’s the payoff, what information and technologies are needed, what kinds of people are needed, what roles senior executives must play and most importantly, how to get started and stay ahead. It provides answers to six key questions that executives should be asking about how to use business analytics today to improve the performance of their organization and compete successfully.