Maximising Business Intelligence: The Strategic Importance of Exception Management and How Canvas Intelligence Does It

In the fast-paced realm of Business Intelligence (BI), where data reigns supreme, the concept of exception management emerges as a powerful tool driving efficiency, accuracy, and strategic decision-making.

Within this environment, exception management involves the identification, handling, and resolution of anomalies or outliers in data – a process that holds profound significance in running a business effectively and seamlessly. Exception management acts as a vigilant sentinel, constantly monitoring the vast streams of data flowing through BI systems. It identifies deviations from established norms or patterns, signalling potential issues or opportunities that might otherwise go unnoticed.

At Canvas Intelligence, we recognise that data accuracy is paramount, but equally key, is how the data is utilised on a day-to-day basis. Our tagline “let your data find you” defines our philosophy and belief that you should have the operational information you need, at your fingertips, anytime and anywhere.

If we were to create a recipe for our approach to exception management, we would need to include business momentum, daily averages, key metrics, short, medium, and long-term indicators, and your key KPIs, targets and objectives. We’ll break down each of these elements below and delve into the strategic importance of exception management.


Momentum and Daily Averages

The first element to address here is business momentum and to understand the momentum of a business over time. What is key is that the business follows an upward and positive trend and equally obvious is the ability to track that business performance over time.

Using Canvas Intelligence’s Performance Management Platform, we create metrics defined as daily averages, which serve as benchmarks or baselines representing the expected or typical value for a particular metric or dataset within a day. For instance, in sales data, the daily average might represent the typical number of units sold per day over a specific period. These daily averages therefore define the performance requirements for a given entity within the business. Setting these clear thresholds and rules defines what constitutes an exception within the data.

So, using these metrics, the performance management platform would track performance over time and start building a picture of the business momentum and the trends within the tracked environment.


Enter the Short, Medium, and Long-Term Indicators…

Another of our core beliefs is that in every business there are key people responsible for what we have defined as the tactical, operational, and strategic elements of the business. When we align this to the indicators mentioned above, we think of tactical being a 30-day view of the business momentum (or any short-term period of your choice), the operational being a 60-day view (ie. medium-term), and the strategic being a 90-day plus (long-term) view of the business performance. This of course could differ significantly based on the type of business. For example, in the FMCG environment, the indicators would probably be set at 7 to 14 days.


Automated Alerts

So what does this all mean? As we have mentioned, upward business momentum is key to growth and we now can visually track the performance of the measured entity over time, with the ideal being continued incremental growth. Using Microsoft technology, our Performance Management Platform provides you with each measured metric in a visual form. Through automated alerts, you can determine whether your business is “in the green”, meaning performance is on track with your pre-defined metrics, or if things are moving to amber or to red, indicating a decline in your performance metrics. It goes without saying that when momentum starts declining and you receive amber and red alerts, immediate action is required!


Proactive Problem Solving

Referring back to the key areas of responsibility and aligning once again with the short, medium and long-term indicators, we create a scenario where the tactical team – those on the ground responsible for the short-term indicators – have 30 days to fix the problems which have created the downward trend in the momentum of the measured entity. By way of example, it may be that the number of leads generated per day has slipped below the required metric. By surfacing these exceptions, it empowers the relevant users to delve deeper into the reasons behind anomalies, facilitating the formulation of strategic solutions and fostering a proactive approach to problem-solving.

Should the problems not be resolved within a 30-day period, there is an escalation to the operational management and then to the strategic entities within the business. Clearly, when it gets to that level, a serious problem exists!


Managing the Exceptions

To avoid the escalation of the problems, our Performance Management Platform will drive a specific set of proactive processes to ensure that when a problem is identified, immediate and effective action can be taken. Through a workflow process, the system creates a document to define the necessary corrective actions and also sets up a meeting with the appropriate people within the organisation. This meeting is designed to understand the problem and agree on the corrective actions to be implemented. All information relevant to the solution of the issue is captured to an AI-driven knowledge base, where over some time, knowledge and experience are captured, thus retaining information which will have would have otherwise been lost when people leave the organisation etc.


The End Result

By swiftly flagging anomalies, businesses can take immediate action, investigating the root cause and rectifying issues before they escalate. This proactive stance not only mitigates potential risks but also helps in optimising processes and enhancing the overall operational efficiency of your business.

Implementing exception management into your organisation is a game-changer. Contact Canvas Intelligence to learn how we can help you get started.

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