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William McKnight

Hello and welcome to my blog!

I will periodically be sharing my thoughts and observations on information management here in the blog. I am passionate about the effective creation, management and distribution of information for the benefit of company goals, and I'm thrilled to be a part of my clients' growth plans and connect what the industry provides to those goals. I have played many roles, but the perspective I come from is benefit to the end client. I hope the entries can be of some modest benefit to that goal. Please share your thoughts and input to the topics.

About the author >

William is the president of McKnight Consulting Group, a firm focused on delivering business value and solving business challenges utilizing proven, streamlined approaches in data warehousing, master data management and business intelligence, all with a focus on data quality and scalable architectures. William functions as strategist, information architect and program manager for complex, high-volume, full life-cycle implementations worldwide. William is a Southwest Entrepreneur of the Year finalist, a frequent best-practices judge, has authored hundreds of articles and white papers, and given hundreds of international keynotes and public seminars. His team's implementations from both IT and consultant positions have won Best Practices awards. He is a former IT Vice President of a Fortune company, a former software engineer, and holds an MBA. William is author of the book 90 Days to Success in Consulting. Contact William at wmcknight@mcknightcg.com.

Editor's Note: More articles and resources are available in William's BeyeNETWORK Expert Channel. Be sure to visit today!

If you want proof that business intelligence still has not made it everywhere yet, take a look at what typically happens when a company is purchased by a private equity (PE) firm, whose goal is typically to turn the ship around to (more) profitability and growth and sell in 3-5 years.  Executives are incented with company performance and often put their own skin (i.e., money) in the game.  This creates the effect of a sprint out of what was a marathon.  Waste is removed from the company equation, and then some. 

So, what happens to business intelligence initiatives when this growing movement of private equity ownership happens to a company?  From what I gather, 50% of the time, BI is either substantially reduced or eliminated.  Ouch.  Do the new owners think the company can achieve its new goals better without BI?  Do they see BI as only relevant for companies with goals beyond 5 years?  Some clearly do.

We are now several years into the emergence of the PE trend and are seeing some of the aftereffects of the PE strategies.  One of them is the RE-introduction of BI.  In these cases, either BI was (1) providing value, but it was imperceptible by the PE firm or (2) not providing good value.

Either way, in my experience, companies never ultimately do not do business intelligence.  It may be called something else.  It may be dormant for a while.  It may be floundering and in need of revitalization.  PE firms take note - let's evaluate the BI in place before making changes.  BI can, and ultimately does, work with a strategy of streamlined, 3-5 year horizons.

Technorati tags: data warehouse, Business Intelligence, private equity


Posted January 25, 2009 8:44 AM
Permalink | 1 Comment |

1 Comment

I think the the Private Equity firms that implement BI internally (like the one I am working with), will see the value. Maybe they will even make the leap to pushing the requirements for BI down to their investments.

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