The Death of Business Intelligence

Business intelligence software saves British Army millions

Posted in Business Intelligence, IT, SAP by neilwilson1984 on September 19, 2013

Business intelligence has a truly transformational effect on organizations. Data impacts every of an organization and harnessing its potential to make decisions is crucial.

Ultimately, though, the usefulness of applying business intelligence (BI) strategies comes down to a simple equation: how does it impact the bottom line. If BI software can’t save the company money, or create new revenue streams, what’s the point of it?

The British Army is not an organization looking for new ways to make money or respond to customer demands. But it is very much an entity that is looking to save money, and drastically.

Good news for it and the BI market, then, as the organization is enjoying some huge savings from introducing BI software.

The British Army is using SAS (business analytics software, not special forces) to analyse and more efficiently allocate manpower and resources, saving UK taxpayers more than £20 million – approximately $32 million.

The Army retains a complex system with up to 200 trades supported, from Infantry to signaller and from engineer to plant operator mechanic. With multiple sources of big data about its personnel, such as skills and capabilities, efficient data handling is crucial to making the right manpower decisions.

Through SAS-driven insight, the army has been able to realign – and avoid wastage – of expenditure totalling £770 million.

Finding savings in this area is hugely important. Personnel accounts for around a quarter of military spending in the UK overall, but three-quarters of the army’s budget.

In addition to creating and providing innovative solutions, the SAS Professional Services team of domain experts are working on-site to help the Army integrate disparate sources of data relating to human resources. Ground-level support means it can work in a more agile and efficient manner when responding to urgent and evolving information demands, as well as supporting the overall manpower planning programme.

Elaine Drummond, head of public sector at SAS UK, said: “SAS gives the British Army a much greater insight into vast volumes of information held within their systems. By sufficiently aligning and simplifying the data, the British Army now has the power to make better-informed decisions about manpower planning, driving efficiencies and new opportunities for innovation.

“The role the in-house SAS team play in supporting the Army will remain critical in reviewing manpower efficiencies and system optimisation today and in the future. Our close engagement on-site means that we can support the current restructuring process by ensuring that systems are aligned with the Army’s core needs – efficient and more structured manpower planning.”

The software being utilized by the army includes SAS Enterprise BI Server, a business intelligence software solution that provides insights from big data that enhance enterprise and data mining capabilities. It is also using SAS to maintain a high quality of data, correcting input errors and de-duplicating data sets, while SAS Enterprise Guide is helping the army streamline its data, analytics and reporting capabilities.

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