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Ready to Mo

November 4th, 2013

Seabeck Systems LLC

Wolverine considers his clean shave for Movember. No razor necessary.

It’s Movember again, which means for the next 30 days Peter Loos will be growing his mo.

Movember is an annual worldwide celebration of the moustache to promote awareness and research for men’s health. Founder Adam Garone tells the Movember story here.

Last year Peter exceeded his fundraising goal, so this year he is doubling the target to raise $150 in donations.

Can you pitch in $5 to help Peter Loos meet his goal? It’s easy to donate at the Peter A Loos MoSpace page.

These funds go toward Movember initiatives for prostate cancer research and men’s health awareness. You can learn more at the Funded Programs section on the Movember website.

Thanks for your help Ladies and Gents!

Movember is a registered national not for profit 501 (c)(3) charity, donations are tax deductible to the extent permitted by law.

Back to blogging at Seabeck Systems

October 1st, 2013

Seabeck Systems, LLC

Back to blogging

As promised we are back for more blogging, with a video from the Santa Barbara coast for you to enjoy:

Next at the Seabeck Systems blog we’ll discuss planning, roadmaps, and other methods that help your organization prepare for growth and success.

Why hire Seabeck Systems? I’m glad you asked.

Change Agent

Dear Prospective Client,

You wrote:

>> I’ve talked to lots of qualified people already. Why should I hire Seabeck Systems?

Thanks for asking!

My name is Peter Loos, and I’m an organizational change agent.

For any Seabeck Systems client, our first step is to develop a roadmap of “People, Process, Tools, and Business Value” that is used to align and bring transparency to business and IT priorities, regardless of the industry or political climate. To initialize that roadmap, I ask people in the business what they do with the information they are requesting from IT. This developmental conversation is used to increase awareness of “need vs. want” for information requested. Together we focus on the business questions to be answered, then work backward to the information needed to answer each question. When the business can demonstrate how the information requested is used for decision making, requirements are captured in a new product backlog, and the project management process kicks in.

Sometimes the business may struggle to define (or to reveal) what people do with the information they request. However, my experience has shown me that this (often difficult) discussion with the business is the only way that IT can elevate a practice of reporting toward a true Performance Management Program. Turning the corner from “building tables, ETL packages, and reports” to “an information factory that supports self-serve access to clean and conformed data” is important, but without clear insight into the questions that the business is trying to answer, the technology investment will ultimately be rendered impotent as the business finds newer and more creative ways to avoid working directly with IT to get the information needed.

If your organization is ready to answer the question “what does the business do with the information requested from IT?” followed by willingness and ability to take action to deliver self-service Performance Management to your employees, I hope you will consider Seabeck Systems as a partner for your team.


BI Basics Part 7: Recap and Next Steps

May 20th, 2013

Seabeck Systems, LLC

What do you want to measure?

Here’s a quick summary of what we covered in the BI Basics series:

1. Who needs BI?
If you want to understand company performance, then BI is for you.

2. What is BI?
Business Intelligence (BI) is a set of systems and processes that people can use to understand and adjust company performance.

3. Where is BI successful?
Success is achieved where people know how to (and actually do) use BI information to support daily decision making.

4. When is BI the right approach?
When you need a complete picture to understand trends while they occur, you need BI.

5. How is BI used?
BI information is used to help you understand how your company operates, and why.

6. Why BI?
What do you want to measure? See the first question: if you want to understand company performance, then BI is for you.

A robust BI program helps you understand how your company is doing so you can adapt and adjust. Successful BI requires the support of well-engaged people from across the organization. The fruits of BI (e.g. real-time monitoring, information anywhere) grow from the labors of 1) understanding and defining your business goals, and 2) defining the measurements for each goal.

Business Intelligence is not a far-off destination years down the road, but a method of understanding performance that produces value from day one. Seabeck Systems advocates an incremental approach to BI development, which supports short-term gains in functionality, and promotes long-term program visibility. We also like to have a plan, which brings us to our next point…

Coming up: the BI roadmap. In a future blog series we’ll share planning steps for BI program development. Each phase on the BI roadmap will address the essential elements of people, processes, tools, and benefits. Stay tuned!

Need more? Review the series:

Part 0: Business Intelligence in Plain English
Part 1: Who needs BI?
Part 2: What is BI?
Part 3: Where is BI successful?
Part 4: When is BI the right approach?
Part 5: How is BI used?
Part 6: Why BI?
Part 7: Recap & Next Steps

Got more questions? Tell us in the comments.

BI Basics Part 6: Why BI?

May 6th, 2013

Seabeck Systems, LLC

Why BI?

Short answer: because you want to understand company performance.

Actionable Information

A BI program may include some reports, but it is not reporting–BI is intelligent information. Manual reporting processes are inefficient for gathering, compiling, and producing actionable information, and can produce inconsistent and often unverifiable information. I.e. if the numbers don’t match among reports or departments, then one, some, or possibly all results are incorrect. (We don’t like numbers that don’t match – we like our data real and verifiable.)

Consistent Dataset

BI has the capacity to deliver company-wide concurrency and integration of measurements. A successful BI program begins with creating a model of existing business data and processes, and understanding what your company wants to measure. Next, you can leverage your BI platform to ensure all departments have a common, consistent, and readily available dataset for queries, reports, and analysis.

In the words of Stephen R. Covey: Begin with the End in Mind. If you’re asking yourself, “Why BI?” consider: “What do I want to measure?”

Got more questions? Try the BI Basics index, or share your questions in the comments.