Location: Minnetonka, Minnesota, United States
What They Needed: A business intelligence solution to measure their performance
About Multiband Corporation
Founded in September 1975, Multiband Corporation, a Goodman Networks Company, is a driven leader in the competitive service and technology industry, engaging with a vast and growing array of technologies including residential, commercial, hospitality, and digital media solutions.
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In the Telecom industry, customer service is always important; but for Multiband’s Satellite and Cable Divisions, it is vital, because it determines how they are paid. As the largest DIRECTV master system operator in the Multiple Dwelling Unit (MDU) market in the US, Multiband’s installation and repair services are compensated based on their service performance. Therefore, measuring the right metrics in the right way was essential to profitability. Multiband needed to know how customers were ranking them on several metrics, including customer satisfaction surveys, the number of repair calls, and how many visits were needed to resolve a matter. When it came to measuring performance in their Satellite and Cable Divisions, Multiband found they needed more real-time, accessible data, so they found dashboards.
Originally targeted to high-level executives, the dashboards were an integral part of the Business Intelligence Performance Center (BIPC) at Multiband – a central hub for gathering information and insight to make better business decisions and drive performance across a very diverse organization. As part of the BIPC, the adoption rates on this initiative have greatly exceeded the original targets and the dashboards are doing much more than originally intended.
“They [the dashboards] are able to very accurately predict who is needed, where they are needed, and how many are needed to get a particular task completed.”
“Before dashboards, employees at Multiband would generate their own reports with duplicated data and time would be wasted attempting to determine whose numbers were correct”
“We started out by focusing on our executive users and designed a high-level dashboard tailored to their requirements,” said Joey Mandel, manager of business intelligence with Multiband. “We are still using the original executive dashboard, although it has been enhanced significantly over the last year. The dashboards have changed the way our executives gather and utilize data. They now have more visibility and we try to carry that visibility down to all levels of management,” he said. Mr. Mandel concluded by saying, “We now have over 50 different dashboards developed and released throughout the company with adoption rates increasing weekly across nine corporate divisions.”
In terms of the visualizations, Mr. Mandel highlighted that, “By visualizing our data we are able to see our metrics in new ways and identify new relationships we didn’t know were there. Our people are now getting ‘at-a-glance’ insights from the data and are now able to work in an almost effortless way, getting information they would never have received from textual data.” Mr. Mandel expanded on this by adding, “We are able to develop correlation coefficients between metrics and can now see how they aﬀect one another using a chart or a gauge. We weren’t able to do that before.”
“We now have over 50 different dashboards developed and released throughout the company…”
Confidence in the data
By connecting the dashboards to one accessible, single source of data, Mr. Mandel observed that the BI team was able to create confidence in the data and eliminate confusion. “Before dashboards, employees at Multiband would generate their own reports with duplicated data and time would be wasted attempting to determine whose numbers were correct,” he said. “With dashboards, this problem no longer arises and we can have confidence in the data and make decisions on the spot.” Mr. Mandel then observed an important business advantage of using dashboards, and said, “It makes us more efficient. Being able to look at the first number and know that it’s right, you are able to react immediately. And you don’t need a day to generate the report, it’s always there just by logging into the dashboard.”
“It makes us more efficient… And you don’t need a day to generate the report, it’s always there just by logging into the dashboard.”
Getting data in real time was also important to Multiband. “If performance drops rapidly in a given area, the dashboards pick this up better and faster than anything else so that a solution can be implemented,” explained Mr. Mandel. “From an operations perspective, this is vital, and allows management to use the dashboard to track various operating parameters such as pending activities.” Mr. Mandel went on to illustrate this by saying, “With the dashboard showing certain KPI’s alongside other key datasets, they are able to very accurately predict who is needed, where they are needed, and how many are needed to get a particular task completed.”
At Multiband, dashboards provide more than business intelligence, they are also a communications vehicle. By broadcasting their dashboards on digital signs through an internal initiative called MB 360, Multiband is permanently displaying and constantly refreshing data to all of their sites across the country. Mr. Mandel explained that the screens display information ranging from progress on goals from the CEO, to the top 25 technicians in the field, and said, “With 75% of our staﬀ in the field, communicating performance in this way has been very effective and has been improving significantly.”
At Multiband the dashboard initiative began as a way to track and measure performance but quickly evolved as a tool that could be repurposed across a large and diverse organization. Dashboards have not only helped Multiband to be an information-driven organization, they contribute strongly to the corporate mission of acting as one team with one voice.
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