Benefits of ERP Business Intelligence for Manufacturers

By John Nugent

What Is Business Intelligence?

ERP business intelligence is an advanced reporting and analysis solution that gives access to data in such a way that it allows better and timelier decision making by giving access to critical information and allowing the user to identify trends over time or quickly find an answer to a question that impacts their business. Business intelligence is more than just colorful dashboards and KPI's (although those are important outputs of a capable business intelligence module). In order to understand the output of business intelligence and how it can benefit your business it is important to understand the building blocks for business intelligence.

Benefits of ERP Business Intelligence 

In the world of ERP business intelligence, data is broken down into cubes. These cubes consist of measures and dimensions. A measure is a quantity expressing an aspect of an organization's performance. A dimension is a a category used to spread out a measure to its component parts. By way of example, a measure could be total sales and a dimension could be breaking down total sales by year. Each cube consists of a particular functional set of data (i.e. order entry, inventory control, etc.). By breaking up the data in this format, a non technical without any database knowledge or experience is able to quickly create ad-hoc reports, dashboards, and KPI's to analyze the data within each cube. This is where business intelligence lends significant value to manufacturing companies - by providing end users with powerful analytical tools they can use without needing DBA knowledge. 

A well designed business intelligence module also is designed for efficiency and resource optimization. The business intelligence data should be segregated from production data into a data mart. The benefits of ERP business intelligence include: (1) no impact on production systems when users create or access business intelligence data marts, reports, or dashboards and (2) the data mart is efficiently designed for speed of access. 

With the structure above in place, your manufacturing organization is able to utilize a variety of toolsets for end user reporting. This could include Excel pivot tables, Microsoft Reporting Services, Power BI, and more. Since many manufacturing organizations are new to business intelligence, it is equally important to have a capable ERP partner that can train users on how to benefit from the use of your ERP's business intelligence module.

Visibility Business Intelligence 

Here at Visibility our business intelligence team provides this support to our customers. Our business intelligence module is not only a fully integrated module within Visibility ERP, but we also have pre-built business intelligence dashboards we deliver to customers out of the box to provide them with a starter kit to unleashing the power of business intelligence. To learn more about Visibility's BI solution, reach out to us at

Topics: Business Intelligence, ERP

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