Business Intelligence Review Lessons Learned

Business Intelligence Review

Lessons Learned:

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BI Creates Less System Redundancy

Provides Increased Responsiveness

Improves Efficiency with More Accurate and Timely Access to records

Produces Timely Reporting

Affects Bottom Line with Reduced Human Resource Costs due to training or staffing IT professionals

Reviewing Marshfield Clinic

Lesson Learned for the Marshfield Clinic that has a staff of 6,500 and over 50 sites and 800+ medical professionals, it treats over a quarter of a million patients annually (Konitzer and Cummens,2011). With the first venture of BI related to automating patient records, this facilitates the move to a paperless or in this case chart free office.

Allows increased responsiveness, now with electronic tablets to capture and patient data, the Clinic was able to provide multiple services and automatically populate a central patient data storage warehouse.

More accurate and timely access to billing and patient care data for patients — such as history, lab test records, prescriptions and medications, even diagnostic information are all securely stored, real time updated, available for decision support, analysis, and reporting.

“What we needed was the right analytics tool to push key patient care metrics and user-friendly reporting right out to physicians’ desktops to support real-time decision making” (.

More timely information, the lesson learned is dealing with higher precision and reliability in use of billing codes that are allocated based on the reason of a patient visit (Konitzer and Cummens,2011). With the correct BI software, it is more simple to use the current process for appraising medical coding assignments. Plus this allows Marshfield to compare their accuracy to the industry standard benchmark for reviews to address any gaps where training is needed (Konitzer and Cummens,2011). “The analytical tools helped us identify outliers, increase medical coding accuracy, and decrease the variance by $5 million. ” according to Kate Konitzer, who is the Analytic Manger at the Marshfield Clinic (Konitzer and Cummens,2011).

More accurate reporting leads to more business opportunities. In addition to costs savings. When before the SAP Business Objects implementation reporting the use of separate systems to pull together coherent reporting was costly and inefficient. Which required additional training of staff to understand the complicated reporting queries, this was time consuming and delayed reporting based on the availability of those trained to use the system. “We were keenly aware of the limitations of our analytics software, which was overdue for an upgrade,” explained Kate Konitzer (Konitzer and Cummens,2011). The ability to share the patient information with the doctors was limited. Also reports often took over a week to deliver, due to not having the skill or accessibility to the information needed (Konitzer and Cummens,2011). However with the BI solution involving SAP Business Objects Enterprise, Xcelsius, and Web Intelligence access to patient histories, records, reporting was at the hands of the doctors themselves. With intuitive non-technical reporting interfaces which allowed them to create reports whenever they were needed with real time accurate data that is continuously updated. The SAP Objects solution, put Marshfield at ahead of the competition (Konitzer and Cummens,2011). The physicians could now communicate and send records to any of the 50 sites using the same tablets. The need to train a department to run reports was eliminated, thereby reducing costs.

Conclusion Marshfield Clinic: How does business intelligence (BI) software help the business.

Business intelligence is helpful to businesses by providing the ability to monitor, understand, and control data already captured and stored in its databases. This information can then by recycled to discover future revenue avenue streams and save costs. BI is one of the latest resources to give leaders a strategy to get insight about the priceless information that already resides in its systems. There are many systems or databases built in-house that store information and the knowledge already captured by companies is astounding. With so much more opportunity for data discovery which to digest once the different types of data are combined such as patient records and billing occurrences, patient services and patient satisfaction, accounting and training or human resources and personnel recruitment (King, 2009). As a typical occurrence with each operational integrated system implemented with BI, the possibility of ROI can increase as much as 400% in more business enhancements.

BI provides a solution to the amount of competition of industry markets, suppliers, IT vendors and other businesses in the field continue to increase year after year, with an in-house ability to reduce costs of operations. In addition to allowing the business to remain in position to react quickly to market changes and trends which are fundamental for survival (King, 2009). A major benefit that BI gives is to highlight areas of ineffective or inefficient employment of business processes and operation.

Reviewing Exclusive Resorts

This International Luxury Resort Company is expanding its reach to vacation destinations around the world. It desires connectivity from its financial services to administrative resources, not to mention sales and business management operations. Add in member services to produce an integrated BI solution that is quick to adapt and respond, plus provides the highest quality and competitive application to meet company goals.

Exclusive Resorts had many systems prior to BI implementation. This resulted in disconnected financial processes between accounting and sales which were run on two different platforms. The financial systems were grouped together with the resource planning system using Oracle (Boulton, 2003). While the sales information was housed using a host, Salesforce. com (Microsoft, 2011). The sales system housed all the individual sales/customer information along with any accounts managed by field service agents (Microsoft, 2011). Administration was stored on yet another system called ER Compass. It was for storing all member related data such as reservations, itineraries, and even personal histories of clients worldwide (Microsoft, 2011). The systems had no way of communicating the data housed by each system.

Charles Livingston, Senior Vice President, Technology, at Exclusive Resorts, says, “We could not easily customize the Oracle system to our complex business requirements” (Microsoft, 2011). Further stating that the finance department had difficulty pulling information from its financial database and converting it into useful reporting to make business decisions. Again accurate real time reporting was a challenging process involving a team of exclusive experts to navigate. This was costly and time consuming resulting in out of date information as soon as it was finally assimilated. Livingstone also said that” & #8230;Exclusive Resorts incurred substantial licensing fees, following a complex cost structure” (Microsoft, 2011).

The lesson learned from BI solutions involving the focus groups dedicated to extrapolating the business requirements needed to address the best solution combining the necessary system processes yet an integrated interface. Livingston remarks that, “Critical considerations for us were the availability of long-term product support and a broad partner community with deep expertise” (Microsoft, 2011).

The lesson was to build flexible technology that was a fit for the business processes (Microsoft, 2011). The company with the goods waas Microsoft Dynamics AX which offered a multi-platform architecture that was able to adapt and fit the changing business needs. This allowed for lower cost for upgrades and the business grows. In addition to less need for hiring expert staffs to handle any updates or needed enhancements reducing overhead costs while maximizing use of integrated business sectors. Such as Sales, finance, Member services, and Human Resources. With an ERP that capitalizes all aspects of BI, Exclusive Resorts is able to rise to the challenge of providing superior quality in the industry at lower costs to the business.

Conclusions from Reviewing Exclusive Resorts

Looking at some of the data and analysis capacity BI system provide

The capability to evaluate expenses throughout the business enterprise and across several platforms and system interfaces. Consider the value of training in comparison to attrition or need to assess the ROI of training programs for Staffs (King, 2009). Another area to explore would be the expense associated with travel for business for a national or international organization. BI will assist in raising the ability to generate revenue through opportunities discovered in reporting and use of integrated business processes (Colby, 2008). For example in the case of competition gaining ground in an area where the business had the major market share.

BI allows for analysis of the consumer market to determine their needs and then find a way to fill that need before the competition can adapt. Using the data to identify new market niches and then move to capitalize on the change in consumer trends based on how they respond. This also allows the business to cross sell related services that can increase revenues even more.

Top three Business Intelligence Vendor Suppliers

Business Objects

Business Objects is the number one vendor of the highest rated BI software providers. From 2006 to present they have sold more than $850 million in product delivery and services. They are considered the highest quality rating for cost savings and efficiency. Their products incorporate reporting capability with SQL, and decision support tools through a single interface. The systems update the databases automatically with any changes which are then distributed throughout the enterprise. The benefits being to save costs on upgrades, support and human resource in addition to time and effort for implementing changes. (Enterprise-Dashboard. com, 2007).

Counterarguments: SAS


SAS has a third of the market as the preferred BI vendor. SAS is rated 2nd after Business Objects. SAS is quite different in comparison to other vendors. They allow different platforms to work together regardless of the vendor name. This allows for seamless integration and collaboration of multiple applications. SAS has a broad variety of tools that allow it to work with any vendor source. Plus they are able to customize solutions from any industry and even multiple industries on a single business enterprise. This is very different than most other BI vendors. At the present time some of the industries that SAS supplies BI solutions for include retail, banking, insurance companies and even manufacturers (EnterpriseDashboard. com, 2007). Because of SAS adaptability the need to remove the present systems and databases at either the Clinic or Resort would have been necessary. BI could have been implemented on top of the present systems possibly reducing the costs of building a new BI system from the ground up. In addition to using present systems, there would have been less of a learning curve associated with implementing a new system at either company.

Counterargument: Cognos

In third

place is Cognos as an industry frontrunner. The primary industry is finance and marketing which is the area of expertise for Cognos. Yet the vendor is taking on new challenges and expanding into other industries. The Cognos 8-Planner allows for the business to design real time budgeting or forecast plans at any point in time, even year to year. This interface is quite intuitive and written to respond to the user instruction based on their preference regarding commands. A user could request reporting in a SQL query language or simple sentence structure for example. Cognos is very user friendly therefore management from and users such as physicians would find it simple to use. The product allows the user to adapt requests to the type of language used in their field. For example in the medical field, medical terms could be used to produce reports on patients, medical procedures, and even produce current medical trends related to certain care or conditions. Such as flu shots, rise of diabetic incidents according to demographic data. The users can also create business commands and rules based on their . Finally the Cognos platform allows multiple projects to exists side by side and work together throughout the enterprise. Producing scalability which would be worthwhile for a growing company similar to Exclusive Resorts (Findtech. com, 2009).


Boulton, C. (2003). Oracle Tweaks Business Intelligence Software. Retrieved August 1, 2009

from http://www. internetnews. com/xSP/article. php/2108471

Colby, A. (2008). IBM Unveils Cognos Business Intelligence Software for Linux. Retrieved November 4, 2011 from http://news. soft32. . html

Enterprise-Dashboard. com. (2007). 5 Top Business Intelligence Tool Vendors. Retrieved November 4, 2011 from http://www. enterprise-dashboard. com/2007/09/06/top-5-


Findtech. com. (2009). Advantages of Cognos. Retrieved November 4, 2011 from http://www. findtech. com/keyword, Advantages+Of+Cognos/search. htm

King, R. (2009). Business Intelligence Software’s Time is Now. Retrieved November 4, 2011

from http://www. businessweek. com/technology/content/mar2009/tc2009032_101762_page_1. htm

Konitzer, K. And Cummens, M. (2011) CASE STUDY – Using Analytics to Improve Patient

Outcomes and Billing Accuracy at Marshfield Clinic. TDWI. Retreived November 4,

2011, from http://tdwi. . aspx

Microsoft Inc. (2011) Exclusive Resorts, LLC Destination Club Generates Rapid ROI, Enhances

Services, of Business. Microsoft Case Studies. Retrieved September 16,

2011, from http://www. microsoft. com/casestudies/Microsoft-Dynamics-AX/Exclusive-



Oliver, D. (2009) Iforce Enterprise Data Warehouse Reference Architecture. Retrieved November

4, 2011 from http://www. sybase. com/bisun

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