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5 key items to improve your Business Intelligence design

Business Intelligence


05 Aug 2015


During the last few years analytics has become more and more important as organisations rely on effective business intelligence to make better decisions.

To be successful with business intelligence and analytics you need a strategy that enables consistency and freedom of analysis for end users, but that also enables rapid development for BI teams. You need a platform and business intelligence design that can provide a richness of features and drives value back into your organisation.

If, in the past, your business intelligence platform has under-delivered on value then a key place to start for making improvements is in how you design your analytics, metrics and dashboards by focusing more specifically on delivering value. The key here is in being doggedly focused on what actually drives your business. Don't just create metrics for the sake of metrics, or replicate old reports - you need to think differently. This is where Value-Based Design comes in...

Value-Based Design

Value-Based Design is a process that hones in on driving business value, by focusing the scope on a specific business outcome. The process is iterative and repeatable, which shortens deployment time and eases change management.

At ViFX we have found the iterative, phased approach that Birst takes to delivering analytics enables organisations to achieve greater success, and the Birst platform uniquely enables this agile approach. 

What are the key components of a Value-Based Design process?

The Value-Based Design process follows a top-down approach and can be separated into the following components:

  1. Identify Key-Value Indicators (KVI)
  2. Identify Action Points
  3. Identify Key User Roles
  4. Identify Key Decisions
  5. Identify Key Info and Sources


What do each of these components mean?

Key-Value Indicator (KVI)

A KVI is a top level metric, and is going to matter to the business. It is something to which the business is held accountable. This could be, for example Revenue, Forecast, or Lead Conversion.

The top level metric needs to be the metric that the business cares about the most. In other words the highest most metric upon which performance can be measured.

KVI Drivers

Drivers are metrics that have direct impact on the KVI - be that negative or positive.

Action Points

Action points are an area of your business or a step within a business process where action is taken to affect the KVI.

Key User Roles

A role within your organisation that performs actions to impact the KVI.

Key Decisions

Choices and key decisions made by individuals within those user roles that affect the KVI.

Key Info and Sources

Source systems and data sources that hold the information needed to make decisions.


The benefits of using Value-Based Design to deliver analytics to the organisation starts by identifying the right KVI's, Drivers, Action Points, and Key User Roles. This ensures that the Value-Based Dashboards created in your BI platform deliver information to the organisation that improves efficiencies. This in turn, directly impacts and improves the KVI over shorter periods of time.

Once you have identified these key components and completed your requirements gathering, you can then plug this information into value-based dashboards.


And, if you use a platform such as Birst that allows for fast iterations of Value-Based Design, then you'll be well on your way to delivering real value back to the business!

Author: Scott Pedersen

Scott is a consulting analyst focused on data warehousing and analytics, with a particular interest in helping businesses leverage cloud business intelligence.

05 August 2015 / 0 Comments