Archive for March 2012

MIS Post (BI Systems)

MIS Post (BI Systems)

Key takeaway from the readings this week:

BI systems should not be used just as a reporting tool, but should be strategically implemented in order to create a competitive advantage.  BI systems should be closely aligned with the firm’s business strategies to take full advantage of the system’s powers.  In order to do this, implementers need to thoroughly understand what kind of data is needed and that the data is not of poor quality.  Too much irrelevant data (noise) is tough to sort through.  Poor quality data doesn’t give decision makers the data they need to make important business decisions.

The restaurant chain industry has embraced using BI systems strategically.   Ruby Tuesday used BI software to identify and improve under-performing restaurants.  Hardee’s used BI software to evaluate the potential market for a new product.  This proved successful as they increased same store sales, narrowed losses, and turned a loss into a profit in 2003.  Wendy’s used BI software to successfully apply a new technology (credit card machines) into their stores.   Customers ended up spending 35% more when they used a credit card opposed to cash.  The chain restaurant industry has proven that when applied strategically, BI systems can significantly improve the bottom line.

Knowledge Management

Knowledge Management Post

What is a key takeaway from the all of the readings?

After reading the two internet articles as well as the Katzenback Partners case, my key takeaway was the importance of buy in and member usage when trying to implement a Knowledge Management System.  The ability to leverage knowledge internally to a firm is paramount and can be a competitive advantage.  In people focused industries like consulting, knowledge management is necessary not only to thrive, but to survive, especially in larger companies with multiple offices.  Recognizing the importance of having a knowledge management system and actually having an effective platform are not enough.  The firm needs buy in from its members.  People need to be active in order to realize the optimum gains from having a knowledge management system.  So a major challenge for firms, including Katzenback Partners, is employee adoption.  Katzenback Partners recognized this challenge and used several approaches for achieving adoption:

  • Internal communication and marketing
  • Informal communication
  • Fun contests and events
  • Created roles and responsibilities including an intellectual capital role, and early adopter role, and a project historian role
  • Created project life cycle management standards
  • Incorporated knowledge management into performance reviews
  • Made the system analytics public

Each firm must develop a strategy for knowledge management adoption.