Elevate your analytics game: Craft a tailored Power BI strategy for business success

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Most people have heard the phrase “A picture is worth a thousand words” and might have heard something about the neurological mechanics behind this – that it is easier for the brain to see patterns and anomalies in a graphic than in a sea of text or numbers.

So, it’s obvious that Data Visualisation is an all-round “good thing” and something we should be doing more of. Right?

Well, yes and no.

Where are you today?

Being of a certain age, I’ve witnessed some of the waves of BI trends and how they are tackled in both public and private sector organisations:

  • Regulation has driven a lot of the investment, such as Enterprise Data Warehouses for financial reporting.
  • Core applications increasingly come bundled with their own reporting and analytics.
  • Organisations have struggled with the right operating model – what to own and manage centrally, and how to best serve the experts in business teams.
  • Business units have sometimes been frustrated with the pace of a central data strategy or implementation and have built their own.

So many organisations find themselves with:

  • An existing landscape of tooling but maybe not being used in the same way IT imagine, some previous innovations will have ‘failed to launch’ and be relegated to shelfware, and there may be undiscovered risk.
  • People skilled in working with data but those skills might not be aligned, and their assets might be seen as personal rather than organisational.
  • And no doubt some data, somewhere, in some format, accessible by some people … but maybe not the right ones!

Where do you need to be?

We have seen that clients in Ireland increasingly want advanced analytic platforms, analytic data marts, and reporting dashboards. Users have become more informed and ambitious – they want to bring in open data; they are no longer content with a picture of past performance, and they want to ask, ‘what if?’.

Not to mention the new big ‘external’ driver – Corporate Sustainability Reporting (CSR) and Environment, Social and Governance (ESG) reporting- which should be coming into Irish law in mid-2024. []

How to get there?

My message today is that before you launch into another wave of investment, really consider your problem. Is it that you don’t have enough reporting, or that you don’t have the right reporting.

If the latter, any further investment may just add ‘more’ to your estate – increasing the total cost of ownership more than is justified by the benefits.

It is worth taking a cold look at the organisation and asking, How did we get here? Which of those factors are still in play? What needs to be challenged so we can move forward more successfully?

Without going into the nuts and bolts about building a data visualisation strategy, I have a couple of tips and mottos to help you pull back and see the bigger picture when embarking on an investment:

  • Tool implementation and tool adoption aren’t the same thing.
  • There is more to business engagement than gathering requirements. Think about information sessions to educate, workshops and demos to inspire, and how to deliver the value to build trust (and release the funds!).
  • Start small. Pick a pilot for a business unit that is ready, has the need and has the capacity to get involved.
  • Clean as you go. Tighten up the processes, clear out the standalone Excel macros on individual accounts, build up the data dictionaries.

At Sogeti, we have a vision of how data visualisation plays its part in a successful organisation. Tools, people, process and data in harmony.

Getting hands on with a tool is a great way to understand it and help you build your own vision.

As a Microsoft partner, we are delighted to offer the MS Dashboard in a Day workshop for Power BI. This is a full-day hands on session where you will ingest data onto the platform, model it and build a dashboard! Sign up for our next Dashboard in a Day workshop at

And if you’d like to have a chat about your own organisation, you can reach us by filling the form below. We have experts in everything from Azure to SAS, with data migrations and data governance in between.

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  • Rob Fleming
    Rob Fleming
    Business Development Manager at Sogeti Ireland