View Full Version : A Compass - The BIMM

04-29-2008, 10:26 PM

What do you guys think of having a "tool" to help you identify what BI solution company need? What about having...

The Business Intelligence Maturity Model - BIMM

Stage 1 - No BI at all

Data is locked up either inside OLTP systems or people know-how. Decision is made based on people opinion. Use of corporate data to base decision making is at most flawed at best, wrong otherwise. Data based decision making sounds like distant heaven promises by some odd religion.

Stage 2 - No BI, Data is within reach

Although no formal processing of data to make decision is available, some people have access to relative quaility data and are able to justify decisions with it, either running some kind of reporting or filling worksheets with right data. Awareness of BI solutions does not exist, but people sense something got th exist.

Stage 3 - Formal process to data-enabled decision making arises.

A special team is appointed to give access control to data, enabling people to use entry level reporting tools. Employees get used to hypothesize first then prove or deny based on a relatively easy to get report. This is the first formal stablishment of a process of data-enabled decision making. Data is sifted directly from transactional systems, no cleansing, no special modeling of it. There is no DW, only the on-line data is avaliable.

Stage 4 - Data Warehouse is born

Impact of direct access to OLTP data reach anoying levels and corporation concludes a special place for data used to Decision Making is needed. The data warehouse is perceived as the solution, pursued and implanted. Reporting have not evolved to a solution - it is still seem as a personal tool.

Stage 5 - DW grows and Reporting Tools get instutionalized

DW is working. Corporation wants to spread access to it troughout departments, so a corporate reporting tool settles in, and old stand-alone reporting software is phased out. OLAP is being talked about, but few if ever realizes what it is.

Stage 6 - OLAP arrives

After being around for sometime, DW and reporting is no more enough to satisfy ever sophisticating questions from some specializing knowledge workers. OLAP is brought to those people. Decision making begins to be automated, with sets of reporting becaming base to small process, like buying from best last month supplier, creating award programs to best customers, stablishing corporate metrics, making precise forecasts, improve goal setting, and the like.

Stage 7 - DSS became institutionalized (Achievment of BI Solutions)

Systems assembled on quality data availability arises, like Customer Relationship Management, Risk Management, Suply Chain Management, Balanced Scorecard, Credit Scoring, etc. Data Mining teams might be created to solve specific business needs, like database marketing, failure mode studies, product development, etc. The (at this time) traditional corporate reporting tool might morph into a coordination system, keeping teams up with latest data needed to daily business operations. OLAP is part of almost every (if not all) department, which counts with some specialized knowledge workers to help formulate and answer new questions. Answers might lead to new DSS in the organization or result in new data added to frequent reporting and/or reports redisign. A distinct separation between OLTP and DSS becames corporate culture.

How to Use it

Well, there isn't much about this: you look around and see a lot of heroes pulling data from corporate systems to run monthly reports, you know your employer have his company at level 2, and might be a sure shot try to evolve it to level 3, but might be risky try to reach in a single step, for instance, level 5 which is a reasonable environment, and probable impossible to get good results in little time at level 7.

But, let's say you were able to push the corporation to level 4 and got yourself a fine and decent working DW. Refering to the BIMM, you would know you need tools to make the most of it and might want to make a new push, up to level 7 at once, creating a DSS on the DW.


It is just an idea seeing the light of the day. I may be worthless, or it might show itself as very helpful for people making decisions on how to help people decide.

That is it. Be seeing you all,

Fábio de Salles
São Paulo, Brasil