Today, I participated in a focus group to help start up the BCIT School of Business Business Analytics Centre of Excellence. The room was full of Business Intelligence/Analytics/Insight leaders from around Vancouver. We were brought together by Ed Bosman and Karen Plesner both instructors in the BCIT School of Business. Karen facilitated a two hour discussion on a series of topics. The group provided advice on the skills expected of graduates in the various business analytic roles – consumers, artisans/analysts and systems technicians. The other major focus was on what a “centre of excellence” for business analytics should provide and deliver to industry.
We were provided with a definition of Business Analytics as the seed for the discussion:
Business Analytics: the skills, technologies, applications and practices for continuous iterative exploration and investigation of past business performance to gain insight and drive business planning (Davenport and Harris, 2007)
This definition generated a very good discussion and the consensus was that this definition was too narrow. It failed to address real-time analytics for operational performance management and web analytics for customer behaviour management.
We had a good discussion about master data management and data standards. One of the great quotes of the day came from an panel member. He was referring to a discussion about how confident and accurate your numbers need to be. I really like this pragmatic approach.
Business Analytics augments your gut
The another panel member introduced the group to a model used by Davenport and Harris. Here is what it looks like:
|Davenport and Harris Model||
The model is a measure of where business analytics efforts are focused. This would be a good model for us to look at the maturity of our Business Intelligence/Analytics practices.
This table contains the lists of topics and themes I noted during our focus group. There are many topics and themes below that will warrant future blog posts.
|Web Analytics||Excel||Operational “Real time”||Consumers|
|Mobile||Access||Tactical “Just in Time”||Artisans|
|Bring Your Own Device||Qlikview||Strategic “Points in Time”||Analysts|
|MDM||MS Analysis Services|
I am looking forward to the next steps in the process and hope to contribute to the effort.
Davenport, Thomas H.; Harris, Jeanne G. (2007). Competing on Analytics: The New Science of Winning. Harvard Business School Press