We’ve all seen that favorite analytics slide—the one that shows the steps from descriptive to prescriptive (with diagnostic and predictive in between), helping you move from “what the heck happened” to “how can we get in front of what may happen.”
And while being able to predict what could happen is a noble analytics goal, it’s a long and hard road to accomplish full of pitfalls and layers of applications and tons of reporting.
Today at CS Week 2019 in Phoenix, Jeff Horn, the Enterprise Reporting Lead for KCP&L (an Evergy company) and our own Ajay Kishanchandani, Lead Architect for analytics with Oracle, unpacked how to get through those steps faster in their combined “Cultivating Cross-Enterprise Data Analytics” session.
Using the long analytics product partnership between Oracle and KCP&L as an example, Horn and Kishanchandani revealed the following tidbits for keeping your analytics reporting projects humming.
- Get all the groups that need your data involved upfront and have a view of their needs and requirements. (Some requirements will overlap, and you should be able to weed out a few as well.)
- Find executive support for planning each project.
- Drill down to what makes for successful reporting for each of your stakeholders, which may be much more than offering the simplicity of a pretty report.
- Offer self-service to each team so there’s not a gatekeeper bottleneck for analysis.
- Invest in an analytics dashboard that highlights metrics for investigation purposes—making the search easier on your analyst.
- Make sure you have multi-faceted applications that shift the analytics focus for your varying needs, from customer to revenue to credit and collects and even exceptions. Without those varied points-of-view, you’re missing valuable insights into your project.
- Build in time to ask different questions of the same data to get the whole picture rather than a small fraction. Don’t rush your analysis.
- Have an agile approach to development and delivery.
- Ensure every financial transaction is loaded into your warehouse based on business rules.
- Centralize management of report modifications and migrations.
- Deliver daily control reports for your business partners for daily reconciliation.
- Build confidence with your reporting content, but keep the human interactions to help with explanations and deeper dives that help stakeholders understand the numbers and the analysis.
- Have a customer service mindset for all your involved groups and keep checking in on needs, desires, concerns, questions, and future planning.
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