Given the growing amount of data available for collection and analysis today — plus the rapid advancement of the tools necessary to do so — it may be more apt to wonder what types of companies don’t benefit from business intelligence (BI).

You’d be hard-pressed to find an example of a company or an industry that wouldn’t benefit from the ability to make data-driven decisions pertaining to pretty much every aspect of performance. Enterprises in the retail and financial sectors particularly are revolutionizing how they do business through data-driven decision making fueled by advanced BI.

Let’s take a closer look at some of the interesting ways companies from other sectors are harnessing BI to minimize inefficiency and maximize profitability.

Pharmaceutical

The seemingly simple act of filling a prescription requires many moving parts behind the scenes: from drug research to get medication approved to inventory management to ensure shipments of drugs are transported and stored correctly. Business intelligence is helping companies glean relevant insights from data so they can stay on top of these crucial tasks and many more.

As HR Tech Weekly points out, pharmaceutical companies are already using BI software to “minimize the risk of an expired product ever leaving the shelves.” After all, this is an industry in which recalls are not only costly but can even be dangerous for consumers.

Pharmaceutical companies are also harnessing advanced analytics to get new drugs to market faster. One Fortune 500 company in this sector is using business intelligence from ThoughtSpot which allows scientists to quickly analyze drug trial results and side effects by patient segment. The agency has subsequently shaved down the time it takes to receive drug trial insights form three months to three minutes.

Oil, Gas and Solar Energy

ExxonMobil is actually harnessing the same platform to optimize production — giving engineers and managers the ability to query data pertaining to historical trends and target volumes, then take their findings and incorporate them into decisions surrounding production.

Energy companies are primed to harness advanced BI and data analytics because they’re able to collect vast amounts of data through sensors and devices positioned throughout their networks. But collecting data and using it are two different endeavors — and BI tools can determine how well an organization is able to pull actionable insights from within these ever-growing data repositories.

Here are a few additional ways the energy industry is utilizing BI and data analytics, according to CIO Review:

  • Monitoring the performance of remote sites and assets in real time
  • Understanding and predicting patterns for intermittent resources like wind and solar power
  • Analyzing the health of equipment and predicting maintenance before breakdowns
  • Understanding and preventing service disruptions

Insurance

There’s a common misconception that insurance companies are more old-fashioned than others in how they operate. But this industry is transforming rapidly, aiming to provide more flexible coverage and responsive customer service to a wide range of clients.

Here are just three notable ways we’re seeing insurance companies use data analytics to optimize performance:

  • Brokers and agents can query customer data for actionable insights, like how to deliver additional value to clients or how to fill gaps in coverage.
  • Companies can analyze claims to identify fraud and even predict the likelihood of it occurring before it does.
  • Companies are using data analytics to optimize policy premiums based on nuanced factors rather than basic demographic info.

Restaurant

When you go out to eat, you’re probably more focused on the menu and ambiance than you are the many data collection points restaurants have nowadays. Many restaurants are using sensors to understand patterns like foot traffic and employee movement — then making changes to improve efficiency based on the results. BI also unlocks the key to understanding customer behavior and preference, allowing restaurants to create detailed diner profiles and optimize their offerings accordingly.

This is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the types of companies benefitting from business intelligence today.

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