Highly political BI
When we have (too) low expectations of Business Intelligence and we operate in a highly political environment, this may result in a return on investment (of BI) that is far below its potential.
A professional BI system
A year ago, a transport company with five thousand employees worldwide, implemented a well thought out and professional Business Intelligence system, which offered the possibility to not only monitor market share figures and revenues, but also to present various financial details and ratios.
The financial department was against
The BI manager had included this detailed data (journal entries) in the data warehouse, even though the financial department opposed this. Later it turned out that many (future) reports for the top managers did indeed require this data and since it was already in the data warehouse, the reports could be created quite easily.
They continued to use spreadsheets
The financial department, however, continued to make its own reports using spreadsheets. The financial director could not persuade the employees to use the data warehouse instead. As a result, the company was unable to(successfully) achieve the business case, simply because people felt that the phasing out of spreadsheets would ultimately result in less work and thus less people.
It requires not only foresight
The company now has a Business Intelligence system that contains a lot of useful financial information and functions however it is not being used. This costs the organization approximately one hundred thousand Euros a year. The moral of this story is that Business Intelligence not only requires foresight, but also top management that exhibits creativity and thoroughness in order to implement the changes that Business Intelligence requires.