Weekend Widgets vs Boardroom Benefits

“Once upon a time, there was a very large organisation who wanted to rule the kingdom. Each week, their Executives would meet in a room to discuss the performance of their troops, and carry with them a 200 page PDF document printed on paper from the Enchanted Forest. They would sit around their Oak-carved table, and argue through the key performance indicators on the first few pages, only occasionally turning to one of the other 190 pages to find specific detail about why one troop was performing so poorly.

This process continued for years and years, until one day, a Knight in shining blue armour appeared on her beautiful blue horse saying “But wait! There’s a better way to view these results, ensuring you not only rule the kingdom, but preserve the Enchanted Forest. This will bring peace and prosperity to the Kingdom in which you live!”

So the Executives embarked on their greatest journey ever, armed with iPads and an IBM Cognos Active Report to deliver only the information they needed most, with the ability to drill to more detail as needed. The Executives went on to make more informed decisions and rule the Kingdom, spending less time flipping through piles of paper and more time playing croquet.”

Whilst this might sound like a bed time story I tell to my children, the first part is in fact a reality that exists in many organisations today. Important meetings spend more time focused on arguing over who’s version of performance is right, and less time debating the actions that can be taken to deliver better results.

The mobile strategy of IBM Business Analytics has been a breath of fresh air to Executives, managers, and disconnected employees. The ability to combine an interactive dashboard with a snapshot of data at a point in time, means they can get the answers they need at a high level, and simply drill for further detail only when necessary. Whether they are connected or off-site, they can still have the information they need at their fingertips, at the time they need to make a decision.

IBM Cognos Mobile

Using the native iPad application, they can even document their own findings on the report and share it with others in the organisation as a simple way to communicate findings and share knowledge.

It’s a known fact – the one thing we all need more of is time. Using the same technology, many of my customers are taking their dashboards offline and delivering them to the inbox of employees on a daily/weekly/monthly basis. This not only reduces the cost of infrastructure, but more importantly gives people back the time it would have taken to have run the report themselves.

Mobile business technology is less about dancing widgets and fancy graphics – and more about putting important information in the hands of decision makers at the time they need to make the decision, wherever they may be. Like many games on mobile devices, “cool” business intelligence applications get downloaded, played with, shared, drooled over, and shortly after deleted when no real business benefit has been found. IBM Cognos Mobile, on the other hand, delivers enough productivity punch to sit on the home page of key decision makers around the world.

Save the widgets for the weekend, and put real benefit back into the boardroom.