In many CPM and BI implementations, too much focus ends up on the IT and data infrastructure at the risk of understanding and addressing the real business needs of the business user. There are many best practices in this area:

  • Understand what decisions and actions should be impacted by information outputs
  • Create a self-service, non-IT assisted
  • Provide formal and informal training
  • Maintain in house SMEs who can bridge business, BI tools, and data
  • Vary your tool set based on needs (distributed Reports, Dashboards, guided navigation, scorecards)
  • Promote an analytical and accountable culture and live by it
  • Make the business user experience EASY!

We want to focus on the last point and suggest a fresh user experience model that actually comes more from the personal financial management segment. We believe that Mint.com is actually a great example of a user experience for a BI application.

Basically, Mint.com allows you to pull in all of your different financial instruments (bank accounts, credit cards, investment accounts, etc) and gives you a full financial picture. It has a simple interface, simple tools to interface with your different accounts, organizes and presents data in a simple manner that is understandable, has simple budgeting tools and even provides “ways to save”, which are better savings accounts, CDs or credit cards.

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