Equipping LOB Users with Report Builder 3.0 and SQL Server PowerPivot for Excel 2010 can Alleviate Demands on IT Support Teams

This is our final post in a recent series. We have looked closer at Microsoft’s Report Builder 3.0 through a series of posts. In our final post on this topic we speak to an important benefit for enterprise IT support organizations: when line of business (LOB) users are successfully empowered with Report Builder 3.0, SQL Server PowerPivot for Excel 2010, and other business intelligence (BI) gathering tools, then IT support organizations are freed up to deal with other, potentially more important requests for service than producing reports, or updating them per user requests.

While we were unable to find much in the way of success stories about Report Builder 3.0, we did manage to find a case study, Software Developer Brings Self-Service Tools to Healthcare, Improves Patient Care. This case study recounts how in 2007, one of Microsoft’s own customer facing consulting groups (the Microsoft Health Solutions Group), had provisioned Report Builder 3.0, SQL Server PowerPivot for Excel 2010, within Microsoft Amalga Unified Intelligence System (UIS) to unnamed healthcare and hospital customers. The collaboration aspect of this system is delivered by SharePoint 2010, Enterprise Edition.

After we read this case study we were left with a very strong impression that an important benefit for these unnamed customers was the fact that information workers from LOB organizations gained ” . . . greater self-service capabilities for analyzing data . . ” as the result of successful implementation of these BI tools. In turn, the typically small IT support teams responsible for servicing these LOBs were freed up. Finally, in 2010, the likely cost of maintaining this Microsoft BI system dropped as ” . . . new self-service BI capabilities [were added] to [Microsoft's] next-generation Amalga UIS 2009 by supporting Microsoft SQL Server PowerPivot for Microsoft Excel . . .”

We think that reducing the cost of support is likely to be a very valuable benefit for healthcare organizations and hospitals that decide to implement this BI system from Microsoft. While the case study concludes with a claim that the cost of training users was reduced as the result of customers implementing the “self service” BI reporting features included in the system, we think that any additional cost that may accompany the addition of a training component to ensure that information workers can successfully execute tasks with tools like Report Builder 3.0 and SQL Server PowerPivot for Excel 2010 should be acceptable. After all, without some form of training how could LOB users manage to implement the features of the system? Further, once LOB users are thereby empowered to use tools effectively, the real cost reductions in support can be realized.

© IMB Enterprises, Inc. & Ira Michael Blonder, 2012 All Rights Reserved
on behalf of Rehmani Consulting, Inc.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

Comment moderation is enabled. Your comment may take some time to appear.