May 31, 2018

11 Ways Business Intelligence Can Help Your Organization

11 Ways Business Intelligence Can Help Your Organization

You may have noticed that our company tagline is: “Software for the Modern Mission.” It’s our tagline because we really want to bring every association into the future, and that means helping them be data-driven.

That’s where business intelligence (BI) comes in.

Okay, sure, BI is definitely a buzzword. But so are “disruptive innovation” and “sustainability,” and both of those are definitely things; things that matter – things that can make or break an organization.

You may assume you’re fully leveraging your data through reporting, but reporting isn’t actionable. It tells you how you’re currently doing, but it doesn’t help you get better.

Only BI can offer your association the insights that can help you increase revenue, decrease costs and spot member trends. With Member Suite’s BI solution, you can analyze membership and meeting data to find out which member segments are most engaged, most likely to renew their membership, and most likely to register for meetings. These kinds of insights can help your association develop a strategy to encourage more participation from those members who aren’t feeling the love.

Here are 11 reasons you’ll want to start leveraging a business intelligence solution like Member Suite’s Insights:

1. Get Organized

If you’re like a lot of other associations, your staff is already busy – really busy. They simply don’t have the time to pull information from different data sources, convert said information, merge it all together and share it with others.

BI systems gather, convert, and merge data for you. They also let staff members easily access information through a user-friendly dashboard. Not only does this save time but it also helps marketing and communication efforts become more streamlined and efficient.

2. No More Guesswork

Bellies should be reserved for digestion, laughing, and seating areas for babies and puppies, they should not be making important decisions about the future of your association. If you’ve historically run your organization through “gut instincts” or “making the best guess,” you’re using hope and not strategy to drive business objectives.

BI removes any need for guesswork. You receive data, trends, forecasting and updates in real time, and you make logical decisions in response. It’s that simple.

3. Understand Where Your Members are Coming From (Both figuratively and literally)

Your members are your bloodline. If they’re not happy – you could feel some major financial pain as a result. One of the biggest benefits of BI systems is the ability to understand member behavior. Who’s engaging with you and who’s not? Why are new members signing up, and why are older members leaving?

But beyond the who’s and the why’s, BI offers how’s as well: How can your association engage and retain members and how can you align your communication efforts with their wants and needs moving forward?

4. Reach Goals

Most associations establish a set of goals that seem fairly reasonable to meet, only to end up with outcomes that come nowhere near the projected target. For instance, you may have a goal of increasing revenue at your association’s next event. But unless you have the right tools and strategy in place, your goal may be nothing more than a pipe dream.

MemberSuite’s Insights allows you to set goals and make sure you stay on track. For example, you can use BI to increase events-related revenue by attracting new members and making it easier for exhibitors to register and deliver more visibility into sponsorship packages.

5. Get Specific Answers to Complex Questions

Such as “How are we performing against current membership types?” or “How are our events doing on a year-to-year basis?” Not only do you get these answers, but you get them almost instantly, so you can take necessary action ASAP.

And speaking of acting quickly…

6. Faster and Better Decisions

Making faster and better decisions with reporting alone is like trying to run a marathon in high heels. Technically you have shoes, but they aren’t the right shoes for the job.

Using BI is like slipping on a pair of lightweight, responsive running shoes. Actionable insights given in real time means you can make not only faster decisions, but the right ones.

7. No Bottlenecking

In many associations, the IT department controls all of the data, making the rest of the staff completely dependent on them. And what happens when you have to request changes to more complex data outputs? Hello bottlenecking and long delays.

With BI solutions like Member Suite’s Insights, staff can quickly access dashboards as needed for the task at hand and they are always up to date with the most current information.

8. The Truth and Nothing But

If you’ve spent any time in the past discussing data points with others on your staff, you know that everyone typically has their own version of the truth. Your membership department may have their numbers while finance has a completely different set. Yet everyone thinks their numbers are the right ones!

But, when everyone logs into the same BI system to view reporting and analytics, there is only one truth. With BI, data becomes trustworthy. (If only BI could do something about politicians.)

9. Decrease Costs

Associations don’t have sizeable budgets that can withstand operational inefficiencies. BI allows you to gain insights into the areas where the chances of cost savings are high.

10. It Makes the Complex Easy

Did you know that human beings now have a shorter attention span than a goldfish? Did I lose you there? I said we have a shorter attention span than a fish. A tiny gold one.

Comprehensive BI systems like MemberSuite Insights allow users to quickly generate visual representations of the data. This is extremely helpful when trying to communicate complicated information to others. Plus, these dashboards can be set to automatically recur and get emailed to other staff in your organization.

11. Creating a Culture of Teamwork

There may be no “i” in teamwork, but there is definitely “BI” in a culture of teamwork. Associations can do more for members when everyone is working together toward common goals. BI helps to foster a culture of teamwork by ensuring all staff has access to the same vital information, is accomplishing the right tasks at the right time, achieving better results and formulating benchmarks to seek opportunities for improvement.

If you’re looking for a way to gain actionable insights from your huge piles of data so that you can thoughtfully direct the processes and strategies your association employs, Member Suite’s Insights can help. Click here to request a demo of Insights Business Intelligence.