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Dell lets managers go 'off road' with self-serve analytics

Joab Jackson | Feb. 3, 2014
Dell is bringing analytics directly to the desktops of its managers, and saving money in the process.

Dell now has 30,000 licenses for desktop access of MicroStrategy, and another 1,000 for mobile use.

"The new model says you don't have to be on my road map. Once you have been trained, you have access to all of these enterprise class tools and every single piece of data that exists within Dell," Schmidt said.

Training on the platform takes on average about four hours. Each major group within Dell gets all the data for its own purview--marketing, sales, services or manufacturing. MicroStrategy also offers pretty solid capabilities in allowing managers to share all their work--the data sets and the formulas--with other managers in their divisions, Schmidt said.

Allowing managers to create their own tools means they can get the information they need more quickly. "It's an exploratory platform," Schmidt said of the MicroStrategy software. "They don't have to know the questions they need to access" the data.

For instance, the sales division of Dell traditionally ran reports of potential customers who had a "propensity to buy" a Dell product or service, predictions that were based on buying history, support interactions, social media data and other bits of information.

In the old centralized model, the report could take up to 16 days to run, and would be based on data that was on average three months old. Now, when a sales team wants to create a new "propensity to buy" model, it can be cobbled together within a few hours and use data that is nearly real-time.

"The use of big data is not an IT problem. It's a business problem that IT is part of," Schmidt said. "I don't think a lot of people really get that."

 

 

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