Thursday, 25 October 2012

Emergence of SAAS BI

Aberdeen has recently published results of their survey on Cloud BI. You can access the report here (Cloud BI: Employ Managed Reporting)

Here are some important and interesting findings out of this report:

Usage of Conventional and SAAS BI

Compared to 2010, percentage of companies using only SAAS BI has increased from 13% to 20% in 2012.

Of the 20%, 17% use both conventional BI and SAAS model. And the remaining 3% use only SAAS with no conventional In-Premise BI at all.

Interestingly, percentage of those using only SAAS declined from 7% in 2011 to 3% in 2012.

Pervasive and Interactive usage of BI

This part of study throws two interesting findings.
  • In companies using SAAS BI, 51% of the employees have access to BI, compares to only 31% in companies using conventional BI.
  • Compared to conventional BI users, significantly higher number of SAAS BI users employ Managed Reporting, Interactive Dashboards or Visual Data Discovery.
Similarly, significantly higher number of SAAS BI users, have the
  1. ability to drill down to detailed information allowing them to discover root cause.
  2. ability  to interact with data to look at different combination
  3. ability to tailor dashboards and reports to suit their needs without the aid of IT Dept
Greater Leverage of IT

All these have resulted in greater leverage of IT in terms of the number of users supported by IT or the
number of users covered in a typical IT implementation.

The increasing penetration SAAS BI are due to a combination of
  1. Lower operating cost due to Cloud
  2. Today’s SAAS BI come pre-loaded with featured aimed at end users and delivering higher level of interaction with data
  3. The degree of flexibility enables the users to discover multi-dimensions with ease and without the support of IT.
  4. Many of the SAAS BI tools allow embedding of reports directly into ERP applications using API,  making SAAS BI usage more seamless.
If you are contemplating a new BI for the organization or for a department, it is worth looking at the options thrown by SAAS / Cloud.

'Subbu' Balakrishnan | EPM and BI CoE

'Subbu' is a qualified Cost & Works Accountant, Company Secretary and Law Graduate, with more than 20 years experience in operations and IT.

Monday, 1 October 2012

ROI of Cloud

As Cloud based services & solutions rapidly alter the delivery of IT to the business, the ROI – value proposition has generally focused on the benefits derived from:    

  1. Cost of Capital:  Capex vs. Expense funding in pay as you go models
  2. Commoditized support services: Infrastructure & Applications  
  3. Service Deliver: Faster & Less Costly Program rollouts
  4. Streamlined: Shorter upgrade cycles    
  • Is the business better off with skilled internal IT staff providing traditional software delivery services or directly working with the business determining new ways of delivering IT business services through cloud based SaaS solutions?  
  • Are your business customers already making these choices independent of internal IT?   

One component of the ROI calculation often over looked is the Opportunity Costs and Benefits.   Simplistically opportunity benefits are what is gained by making a choice and every choice has an economic opportunity benefit and cost.
Cloud Services & Solutions provide opportunity benefits to organizations by releasing both financial and human capital resources to deliver strategic business initiatives.  Consider the following choices?  
  • What is the business value of deploying internal support resources for commoditized lower cost support services?  

Scarcity occurs when wants and needs are unlimited, while the resources needed to produce goods and services to meet those needs and wants are limited.   As cloud services and solutions provide business alternatives to scarcity what is the business benefit of your IT service delivery to the business?

Case Study:  Cloud CRM  
A Midwest based supplier of dairy products estimated it would have required 80K to upgrade an existing custom internal CRM solution to allow interaction with the company’s franchises.   The business owners selected a Cloud based CRM solution that cost 20K to establish with a monthly service charge of 175 per user.
The net business benefit was the cost avoidance of 80K and elimination of internal support services of 110K annually. Internal IT absent from the decision process until integration questions arose, were surprised that the business opportunity benefit was 190K annually. Shortly thereafter the IT Leadership changed the focus of the internal IT organization to developing business acumen with a “Business Process Leadership” core value objective. 
Mike Van Buren | Cloud Evangelist