Businesses with under 50 employees often feel like Goldilocks in Papa Bear’s chair when it comes to shopping for business intelligence systems. It can be daunting to think about upgrading your existing methods to a robust BI system that helps you glean insights from your data. Yet the same technology that puts enormous computing power into a small cell phone tucked into your jacket pocket offers small business owners a powerful opportunity to make better decisions.
Let’s take a look at some of the potential issues a small or mid-sized business may face when choosing business intelligence systems and how to solve those issues to get the best BI system for your needs.
Narrow Your Options
The sheer volume of choices on the market today can make your head spin as you’re looking over available business intelligence systems. At ASI, we can make it easier for you to choose the right system by helping you sort through the choices on the market to find the best BI system for your needs.
It helps to sit down with your leadership and management team and make a ‘wish list’ of features for your new system. Do you need greater supply chain visibility or warehouse data? Integrated operational data with your CRM system? Accounting information shared with sales and marketing? All of this is possible with the right system in place. It’s only by knowing and sharing your needs as a team can you whittle down the choices available to you.
Use a Small Business Solution
Business intelligence systems are scaled according to the type and size of the business using them. Some BI solutions require a full-time database administrator, which isn’t an option for many growing companies. When you have 50 employees, many people wear more than one hat to make the business run efficiently.
Small business ERP solutions such as Sage 100 and Acumatica are right-sized for your needs. They’re designed so that they are self-explanatory, with easy-to-use dashboards and other features that you don’t need a degree in computer science to understand. Your CFO, marketing manager, warehouse foreman, and sales team can easily access and use the system with basic training.
Choose a system that fits your company—but don’t force a system to fit your company. Find the right match from the start. Most BI systems can scale up as your company grows, so you won’t get locked into a system that feels too restrictive for your needs. But it’s better to start with a system that takes into account the challenges of an average-sized business rather than one that assumes you’re a gigantic operation with multiple locations.
Start Slowly and Ease into BI
Lastly, it’s a good idea to start your business intelligence journey slowly, easing into the new system and using key features well rather than trying to dive into all features at once. Get to know your system. Remember that BI data is only as good as the people interpreting it. The system can feed you reports, lovely data visualizations, and has other tools to help you with business decisions, but at the end of the day, good decisions depend on sound judgment, experience, and alignment with your company’s goals and key performance indicators.
Find the Right Business Intelligence Solution with ASI
Accounting Systems, Inc., (ASI) can help you choose the business intelligence solution that is sized just right for your business. If you are using Sage 100, then the Sage Intelligence and Reporting Module may be all you need. If you are interested in a cloud-based solution, Acumatica Cloud ERP business intelligence tools put incredible analytical capabilities into the hands of everyday users. Contact us to find the business intelligence product that is just right.