Business Intelligence Strategy: How to Develop and Document your BI Roadmap

Why you need a BI strategy

Step 0. Assess your current BI ecosystem

  • What’s your BI vision and or do you have any? How is that vision aligned with your IT and corporate strategy?
  • Who are your BI players and how coordinated are they? Is there function overlap?
  • How do you handle data management and data governance? How do you support BI users?
  • What solutions are you using and how? Which of them bring value?
  • Is your architecture aligned with corporate strategy? Are you sure that your licensing model works best?

Step 1. Create the vision

  • Who’s going to be in charge of BI processes (i.e., establishing a Business Intelligence Competency Center that will govern BI software and architecture)?
  • How is BI strategy aligned with IT and corporate strategy?
  • How will we deliver and support BI solutions?
  • What types of solutions do we plan to implement and where?
  • What infrastructure are we planning to provide?
From rare reports to the role of Chief Analytics Officer Source: How to Accelerate Analytics Adoption When Business Intelligence Maturity Is Low

Step 2. Establish BI governance processes

  • A BI governance team or people who will be responsible for governance processes
  • BI tools and lifecycle management or the design and development of BI architecture
  • User support from technical, functional, and data standpoints

BI governance team

BI tools and lifecycle management

The data warehouse + data mart configuration of BI architecture

User support

Step 3. Build a BI roadmap

This roadmap has planned activities, KPIs, and, of course, implementation dates
  • This roadmap will be viewed both by the internal (your governance and development teams) and external (end users) audiences, so it should combine a presentation-like format with technical aspects like timelines and metrics.
  • You can divide tasks by responsible teams or task types (for example, training tasks, data visualization design tasks).
  • Don’t forget deliverables and milestones. Deliverables help measure the progress with something tangible (all data sources are connected) and milestones are a conceptual signal of a new stage (data integration is complete).

Step 4. Document a BI strategy

  1. Executive summary. Written last but included in the very beginning, the summary gives an overview of steps and advancements you’re planning to make to reach your strategic goals. Why you’re starting this process, what your vision is, the timeframe, and deliverables.
  2. BI strategy alignment with corporate strategy. Go into detail about the value BI will bring to the organization, what problems it will solve, and how new processes will support the existing ones.
  3. Project scope and requirements. This is the place for your roadmap and BI architecture schema, where you go into detail about best vendors, architecture design, required staff and budget. Basically, explain the next steps after the strategy document is shared/presented.
  4. BI governance team. Let the audience meet the group responsible for the effort and communicate to end users who their immediate managers are.
  5. Alternatives. Here, review the options you’ve considered but chose to pass on and explain why they didn’t work. This will reduce the audience’s doubt and highlight the benefits of the final decisions.
  6. Assessment. Explain deliverables and the metrics of success you will be calculating. For example, end users must know why you’re reaching out for feedback or tracking their activity in the system.
  7. Appendices. Lastly, provide additional information like the list of picked vendors, organization charts, a glossary of terms, and even a corporate strategy document to revisit and compare.

Step 5. Review your BI strategy every year

The art of strategizing



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AltexSoft Inc

AltexSoft Inc

Being a Technology & Solution Consulting company, AltexSoft co-builds technology products to help companies accelerate growth.