Matthew Felzke
Data Warehouse and OLAP Cube-based Reporting for Microsoft Dynamics

How you access your data can determine the speed and efficacy you can achieve in your financial reporting processes.  This article will discuss data warehouse and OLAP cube based reporting.

Data is driving decision-making at all levels because data continues to grow in size and significance.  Logging, storing, and evaluating data has become a big part of the business culture today.  In order to produce rich, helpful financial reports for an analysis of a company’s opportunities and challenges, you will have to routinely store, access, and manage your data.  Because of this reality, you might feel overwhelmed your technology options for storing your data.  You have a few options, but they vary in functionality, and one might be better for your company than another, depending on what analysis goals you are trying to achieve.  This article will explore data warehouse and OLAP cube based reporting.

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Mike Applegate
Enterprise Collaboration: The Water Cooler of Performance Management

We all know about the enterprise collaboration tools that have been introduced over the past couple of years, and the accompanying issues that come with them. While there still may be a perception that enterprise collaboration tools are merely a Facebook-type of experience tweaked for the business world, the right tools—with proper usage of the right features—can significantly increase your efficiency.

But there’s more than just better efficiency and productivity at stake. Yes, a good collaboration tool will probably result in fewer emails and email trails, less time spent in planning and attending meetings, and make it easier to search and find information such as people with specific expertise that may apply to a project. I believe, however, that one of the biggest gains from an enterprise collaboration tool, especially as it applies to business intelligence, is better retention of your discussions from:

1)    The strategy formulation
2)    The budget process
3)    Monthly reports and dashboards
4)    General or specific improvement ideas and projects

Enterprise collaboration tools such as BI360 Collaboration organize and store all information (discussions, ideas, attachments, employee profiles, etc.) in a central repository. So, your company’s knowledge database isn’t just protected, it continues to grow and add value over time. Things like meeting notes that never get recorded, or conversations that are quickly forgotten are all captured and securely stored for future use, with Google-like search tools to find and retrieve the information, even if it’s years later.

Let’s say your team wants to review a report from three years ago, but the finance manager has long since left the company. With enterprise collaboration, you can access the archived information in seconds, plus leverage social media technologies with @mentions and #tags within live discussions, automatically cross-linking that information so others can view it at the same time. It’s like having a virtual water cooler that can serve up every discussion, from every meeting, on any project—throughout the history of your company. #goodstuff.

See more features of BI360 Collaboration here.

Nils Rasmussen
Welcome to Complete Insight!

We’re excited to launch our new business intelligence collaboration tool. With collaboration for BI, we’re taking our innovative BI360 suite and delivering even better insight into every facet of your data and your business.

So what’s so exciting about our enterprise collaboration tool? With proper use of just a few key features, your company can realize significant increases in efficiency and productivity:

  • Dashboards:Monitor all the activities that are important to you: groups and discussions you subscribe to, tasks and workflows assigned to you, the hottest topics in the company—all on a single screen.
    • Social Report Library: Read and comment on reports through unified books that combine reports from any number of your organization’s reporting and BI tools, including BI360, SQL Reporting Services, and more.
    • Dialogue: Open up and encourage productive discussions and commentary across locations, departments, functions, projects, resources—even devices—to ensure the right information reaches the right people, to make the right decisions.
    • Profiles: Search for and review employee profiles to see if their expertise aligns with your needs. Find associated information that may connect you to additional key resources, and “follow” experts that share information of interest to you.

 

These are just a few. For a complete look at our new collaboration tool, visit our Collaboration page, or watch our webinar. 

Nils Rasmussen
Enterprise Collaboration Tools – Are You Keeping an Eye on the Technology?

There is no doubt that a new generation of Enterprise Collaboration tools are coming full steam to the corporate marketplace. As the Facebook generation(s) starts demanding modern collaboration tools and interfaces at the workplace, this new breed of “social” business tools are here to stay. Early adopters are already using one or more enterprise collaboration tools, while late adopters might take two or more years to get on-board.

Yes, we have had collaboration tools available for a long time, just look at how much time we spend with e-mails, desktop sharing tools and sharing of files on the good old intranet every day. The question that every executive who believes technology is the way to make a real impact on their organization should be asking themselves is; if e-mails, meetings, conference calls, employee surveys, HR-managed resource and phone lists are the best use of everyone’s time for the next 10 years or if a good amount of this communication could have a better home in a modern enterprise collaboration tool.

A successfully implemented (including executive sponsorship and cultural adaptation) enterprise collaboration tool could with ONE single web-based interface (not with logging in to 5 different tools) that works on any device help with the following:

1. Idea generation and nurturing

2. Finding and networking with key resources (people directory)

3. Facilitating and storing of important business discussions of any kind (that does not include communication like: “Hey Joe, do you want to go to lunch at Noon today?”). E-mails and instant messaging do a fine job handling that today.

4. Facilitating and storing of key information through built-in micro-blogs and wikis

5. Facilitating and storing employee (and partner/customer) surveys

5. Searching and finding historical information from all of the above processes

6. Cross-linking of information from all of the above, so when you are doing one task, key words in your text start finding related items in the collaboration repository and serving it up real-time.

I think it is just a matter of time before modern enterprise collaboration tools are at a maturity stage and there are enough success stories that the technology becomes more important to growth and productivity than for example the company’s ERP system. This will not happen in 2012, but my guess would be by around 2014 or 2015.