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The Decision Factor offers insightful comments and observations on analytics—from views on new technology approaches and market dynamics to the latest industry trends driving demand for faster, smarter information analysis. This blog contains personal views, thoughts, and opinions from SAP employees, mentors, and friends working in the area of analytics. It’s not endorsed by SAP nor does it constitute an official communication of SAP.

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Mobile BI Design Framework: Performance with a User Focus

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When we discuss performance in mobile business intelligence (BI), we often talk about two components: response time and availability. I discussed the response time in detail in a previous blog. Today, I want to expand on availability.

Availability is sometimes referred to as “up time,” but it goes beyond that. We need to manage performance with a user focus to make sure our priorities support business execution, not hinder it.

Managing performance of any technical solution is a tricky business and mobile …

Mobile BI Design Framework: The Art of Support

customer service representative using headset

When it comes to supporting mobile business intelligence (BI) implementations, what we do after we go live is as critical as what we do before. Technology support is art as much as it is science. If you add to the mix global deployments, remote access, language and cultural barriers, we face a daunting task especially when supported by virtual teams without on-site personnel. Two key elements should guide your approach: quickly identify the root cause for immediate relief and put in place safeguards to prevent future occurrences.

Let’s take a look at several …

4 Ways To Accelerate Mobile Innovation with Your Customers

4 Ways To Accelerate Mobile Innovation with Your Customers

I’m often asked the question, “How can we accelerate mobile innovation?” And my answer has always been the same—getting closer to your mobile customers is the only way!

When it comes to mobile innovation, your users (customers) will be the key to your success whether we’re talking about mobile app development, mobile web sites, enterprise mobility, or mobile business intelligence (BI). Moreover, it doesn’t matter if your customers are internal or external to your team or your organization.

“Innovation” means different things to different people. In its basic form, innovation is how we …

6 Tools to Make Your Mobile Design Teams More Effective

6 Tools to Make Your Mobile Design Teams More Effective

I joined a consulting firm just as I came out of the private sector where I was the customer of technology. In my new role, I found myself on the opposite side of the intersection of business and technology where I was looked to as the expert. I realized quickly that I had to be agile and innovative instead of demanding a solution to problems that were both challenging and complex.

I see many parallels between my challenges then and mobile ambitions of many young design teams these days. Whether we are talking about …

Mobile BI Design Framework: The Use of Colors

Mobile BI Design Framework: The Use of Colors

In mobile business intelligence (BI) design, the use of colors plays an important role because colors are some of the easier components to incorporate into our mobile assets. However, this ease of use often leads to misuse and, subsequently, ineffective design of our mobile solutions.

I often find that the oversight happens not because we lack the knowledge or technical capability, but because we make the wrong assumptions. I always argue: simple is beautiful if we want our design to resonate with our customers (users). And as …

Mobile BI Design Framework: Impact and Utility

Mobile BI Design Framework: Impact and Utility

In mobile business intelligence (BI) design, two elements are always in play. I refer to them as “utility” (not to be confused with utility in economics) and “impact.” At the micro level, they influence directly how we develop our mobile assets (reports, dashboards) in order to effectively deliver actionable insight through the mobile user interface and experience. At the macro level, they influence how we design and execute our mobile BI strategy.

Utility Is About Efficiency

Mobile BI is about faster, …

What Makes a Great Mobile Impression

What Makes a Great Mobile Impression?

This past weekend, NFL fans around the globe watched the Super Bowl and, once again, the advertisements were at the forefront. They can be very influential in promoting a company’s brand and awareness. They’re sometimes compared to an elevator pitch because they require a design that’s compact, concise, and captivating with an execution that needs to be flawless and delivered in seconds and minutes.

I believe something similar occurs in mobile design and execution. Making a great “mobile impression” requires …

Mobile BI Design Framework: The Art of Performance

Mobile BI Design Framework: The Art of Performance

In mobile business intelligence (BI) design, performance is one of the most critical elements of the mobile BI success formula. High quality content, reliable data, and mobile purpose are a must. However, none of that matters if the performance is poor—mobile users tend to be less patient about performance. Think about it for a moment. Unlike a PC users who may be chained to a desk, mobile BI users typically access mobile BI assets on the go and with less time to spare.

When we discuss …

Do You Have the Right Mobile Mindset

Do You Have the Right Mobile Mindset?

Mobile has become a key ingredient in the integration of business and technology. If designed and delivered effectively, it provides unparalleled convenience, speed, and ease of use. However, having the right mobile mindset is a prerequisite if you’re going to drive growth and profitability through the use of mobile solutions.

In its simplest and purest form, I define it this way:

Mobile mindset is the framework that enables organizations of all sizes to deliver the power of mobile through innovation and without disruption to the business.

Regardless of the size or the scope of the mobile engagement, a …

Everyday BI: Typical User Profile

Everyday BI: Typical User Profile

In the first installment of this series, I described everyday BI as a concept that surfaces everywhere in our daily lives. Next, I want to portray the essential attributes of everyday BI users in order to set the stage for our analyses and experiments in the coming posts.

First and foremost, everyday BI users are data consumers who use technology to drive insight from diverse data sources. In some cases, they generate the source data by their actions, such as accumulating purchases, signing up for subscriptions, or making inquiries. In other instances, they …