Last week I went to visit one of our clients to look at how they are delivering Business Intelligence from Microsoft Dynamics NAV via the tools available in SQL Server Reporting Services (SSRS).

The client in question initially selected TVision Technology as they recognised we had the SQL skills to assist their team. However, much of what they showed to me was all managed by their internal team. We had been involved with early cube structures; they had also involved an external cube expert to help with this. Once completed, they had the data ready to be queried and delivered.

The use of SSRS via a browser means that reports can be delivered across the global organisation on a published (push) or self-serve basis. That the cube is refreshed periodic ally means that management team are all looking at the same figures.

And this was not just flat reporting. The cube is being used to provide marketing insight across the companies in the organisation which forms the basis for further campaigns. It provides all the same filtering ability as within NAV but does so across tables and companies, adding the extra dimensions you would expect from a cube!

The internal IT team have used the standard tools to create dashboards and graphics. However, I am a big fan of simplicity. The simplest report was a black on white table of data, sent to senior managers. The IT lead was apologetic about the basic layout, “The managers like to view data on their iPads and other devices so we needed to keep it simple to be device agnostic,” he explained. Reliable data, easy to view on any device and meaningful to the user; sounds like perfect Business Intelligence to me!