What does BI mean?

Business Intelligence, or BI, refers to the everyday (every moment) reporting that reflects the current status of a business’s key metrics. BI can refer to the reporting as well as the tech stack that underpins the data flow into the reports or dashboards. The technology (software and hardware) BI landscape has moved on considerably over the last 5 years and now there are solutions for most budgets and capabilities.

The job of a consultancy like KETL is to provide the experience and know-how to design the best way for a client to deliver critical reports to the business teams, to the right people at the right time and in a meaningful way.

Why you need it

Once you know how your business is performing using some key metrics you can then start to find ways to improve that performance by intervening. Any intervention can then be monitored. The key to reporting is consistency and ensuring that comparisons are made in a meaningful way.

An example that illustrates this is a retail one; like for like reporting is essential for retailers but what happens if your reports just rely on dates? The reporting would then miss fluctuations in like for like sales on different days of the week, different seasons or dates that fall on bank holidays some years and not on others. If you do not know your stock position at any point at a given trading period then you may over invest in stock that is not moving or you may sell stock too cheaply and end up with missed sales as stock runs out.

Business Intelligence Technology


There are lots of technology solutions to help us create a BI stack once we have designed the data model. The key to a BI solution is that it can integrate different platforms and software solutions to allow all users to view information related to their work in an up-to-date and timely manner. Once the key business reporting is well understood, a good BI solution will then be able to inform a predictive analytics function that will not just look at the state of play of a business but to be able to infer and predict possible scenarios depending on changes in action that are made.

Data integration is a key element of  BI to ensure that data is ingested from multiple data sources, for example, ERP, invoicing, payroll, inventory tracking, SCADA systems, etc.

Data from integrated systems will be collected by BI in a central data store, often called a data warehouse.

How we help you unlock the power of BI

We will talk to you and your team. We will establish how each of the business teams needs to interact with the BI reporting. Once we understand the reporting that is required we will start to create a data model. The data model will focus on the data journey and all of the customer touch points across the business. The data model will map the interactions between the data systems and understand how often those interactions need to be updated. We work in an agile way so that you do not have to know all of the interactions and functionality required up front. We will start from the business outcomes required and work backwards.

Make it happen your way…

Managed Services

A monthly service to enable even SMEs to have access to data insight 24/7

Professional Services

One-off project implementation for all data solutions