Regardless of its size, your business probably collects plenty of data.
From financial records to email and customer lists to information gathered by your CRM system and beyond, it’s a question of using that data productively.
Up until now — for small businesses anyway — it probably involved paying a consultant to sift through some of that information for you and come up with a few meaningful conclusions.
And mashing up all that information to create helpful “visualizations” or infographics everyone in your business could make sense of was tough.
At least, it was tough for all but larger enterprise companies with an army of IT professionals and the most advanced business intelligence and analytics software.
SAP Lumira, Edge Edition Brings BI to Small Businesses
But SAP, maker of much of this advanced and expensive software, claims this is no longer the case.
On March 10, 2015, the company announced the SAP Lumira, Edge Edition business intelligence software designed specifically for small-to-medium-sized businesses.
Scott Mackenzie, Senior Director of BI Solutions Management at SAP, says for small companies with plenty of data but no way to use it properly, the problem is often the same.
“So you often find organizations that are just buried in spreadsheets,” Mackenzie told Small Business Trends in a recent phone interview.
With SAP Lumira, Edge Edition, however, SAP gives small to medium sized businesses a server into which all that data can be poured.
Mackenzie says small-to-medium-sized businesses can use SAP Lumira, Edge Edition to comb through CRM data, email lists, customer lists, inventory data or other information your sales, marketing or financial department might want to supply.
The software can then help you easily arrange that data in various “visualizations” accessible on a dashboard.
You can also create a variety of reports with simple infographics making the information easy to digest and understand.
Data could be used to depict your average customer “life cycle” or how sales patterns change with seasons and months of the year. It could also depict how sales responded during specific marketing campaigns and other initiatives.
SAP Predictive Analytics 2.0 Identifies Hidden Data Patterns
As if this weren’t enough, the same day, SAP introduced its Predictive Analytics 2.0 software. Predictive Analytics 2.0 identifies hidden patterns in your data and makes predictions about what the data might mean in the future.
Though designed for large enterprise companies, the software can be scaled down for small-to- medium-sized business use.
SAP Director of Product Marketing Pierre Leroux says the software can be useful for companies that seek to make projections with existing data. Businesses could use the software to make predictions about their market or other future concerns.
But Leroux said the predictive software can also be used as an add-on to Lumira Edge.
The SAP Lumira, Edge Edition is priced at around $1,313 per user — still a bit high for some small businesses.
But Mackenzie said a free demo version of the software is now available at a new website set up for SAP Lumira, Edge Edition.
And companies should contact an SAP sales representative for more on Predictive Analytics 2.0, Leroux said.