Now that summer is in full swing, one thing that can be guaranteed is an abundance of cricket. Being an avid cricket enthusiast, I spend many hours watching ball after ball, and can’t help but be amazed at the amount of statistics we are inundated with, the wagon wheel analysis of a batsman’s performance being one of my favourites. This made me realise how much easier it is to interpret statistics through visualisation. When we see a chart, graph or dashboard we can quickly absorb the information it portrays. We take the graphical presentation of statistics for granted when we are watching sport on TV. We should apply the same tools to business. We can be overwhelmed with facts, figures, statistics and numbers but good pictorial presentation can help us to identify and understand the important stuff.

One of the goals of modern business intelligence deployment is to support better business decision-making and the Zap Business Intelligence (BI) tool is fast becoming the benchmark analytics tool of choice within the Microsoft Dynamics range of products. ZAP Business Intelligence gives us the ability to easily assemble resources within a single screen to provide an instant visual snapshot of performance – a wagon wheel analysis, if you like, of the company’s performance.

Dashboards provide us with this instant visual snapshot, and they are typically role based. For instance, the CEO will view an executive dashboard across different functions covering the entire organization, whereas a regional sales manager will view sales analysis for his/her territory. This role based approach is aligned with Microsoft Dynamics NAV role tailored client.

Business Analytics gives you the flexibility to truly make the solution your own. Users have the choice of viewing their analytics via Outlook, the web, or exporting them to Excel. Being a web based solution ZAP BI can be accessed from anywhere.

In the past in a typical BI implementation, most of the budget was spent on building and maintaining the data cube. ZAP has overcome this issue by including the CubeXpress tool to handle the technical side of the implementation, virtually making the back end implementation “Plug and Play”. So, as your needs change and you make the necessary changes in your NAV solution, those changes or customizations can be incorporated quickly and easily into ZAP ­- keeping your software solution dynamic and agile.

Next time you settle in front of the TV to watch your favourite sport make a mental note of the clever ways the game’s statistics are displayed for you. You could do the same for your business.

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Written By Tyrone Roberts

Tyrone joined Fenwick Software when he moved from South Africa in 2008. As a PRINCE2 qualified Project Manager and a Certified Dynamics NAV specialist, Tyrone has completed Dynamics NAV implementations for clients of varying sizes but he has become something of a specialist at implementing Dynamics NAV for small and medium size clients utilising the rapid implementation methodology. Tyrone is also a payroll specialist and has expertise in ZAP BI.

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