Often on talkRA, we have discussed the problems of RA and the one that immediately comes to my mind is the post that Eric shared on ‘5 RA Questions You Dare Not Ask (and I will not answer)’ . The apparent humor spoke of the real world challenges. In Part 1 and Part 2 I introduced the motivation for an RA ‘clock’ that will reverse time and improve strategic visibility into operations with the aim of addressing the ‘RA Questions’. Now let me explain what it does in more detail as to how Operational productivity can be improved.
Benjamin’s time-reversal clock: RevenuePad for RA teams globally
The troubles of analysts lie in identifying which KPI do I look first? Where do I start? How much less time can I spend in finding the problem areas so that I can focus on recovery? Effectively, for analysts today, 80% of their time is spent in finding the problems and hence the most important time for focusing on methods of revenue recovery is lost.
These had to be solved, so the clock that would help Benjamin is “here”.
For the analysts, RevenuePad provides desktop pin-pointing the problems areas and the associated KPIs to look at. RevenuePad houses a capability within itself, which lays out the complete revenue chain, based on the underlying (configured) KPIs with visual clues for helping the users start off on day one. The best part, this view is ‘aut0-created’!
This brings me to saying, remember how Windows changed the outreach to personal computing over DOS? DOS was for the experts. Much like most of tools that has an extremely steep learning curve. Windows brought in the simplicity by the aid of visual aids. Truly it is said, a picture speaks a thousand words. RevenuePad provides just the complete set of visuals tools that the RA users would need. Even the most liked capability of RA functions, “drilling down to details” happens visually in RevenuePad.
This is the simpler diagram, but in production systems, the information and diagram becomes complex. So if the diagram remains complex, it would be of now use for the analysts. Therefore, entire RevenuePad uses a single system of navigation across the business hierarchy, lines of business, upto the detailed level data. So when the analyst drills down, based on his areas of selection, the system automatically zooms into the necessary revenue chain associated with the analyst’s choice. The single system of navigation and drill down was important in terms of usability of the application so as to ensure that there was literally a ‘zero’ learning curve for the users using the product for analysis.
With a visual analysis system, the next important step was to enable the analyst understand, if the problems detected by the KPIs are recurring or a one time activity. This brought about the creation of a “KPI Lifecycle Visibility” in terms of performance of the KPI/s. Hence if a KPI stabilizes overtime, the analyst would be able to see the same happening.
For analysis, the conventional approach is to drill down into underlying data from the KPI. The difference RA system from Subex creates at this stage is two fold. One: for every KPI, the first thing that is shown to the analyst through RevenuePad is a complete build up of the same right from the ‘raw data’. A lot of RA tools, just because they map the raw data into the product data model, tends to lose view of the Raw Data. RevenuePad retains the visibility into the raw data as well. Of course this needs consideration w.r.t hardware sizing and availability, but if analysts want, he can zoom into the details of the even raw data from which the KPI was created. The second difference created is that of Zen, which provides the magnet to pull the problems out for the analysts without the analysts having to spend effort.
Thus RevenuePad and Zen, through an all visual methodology is aimed to reduce analysts’ time by helping find 80% of the problems with 20% effort and time of the analyst. Therefore, now the rest of the effort can go into aiding revenue recovery and ensuring more coverage can be achieved by the RA team.
Finally Benjamin is on the verge of becoming healthy. There is one problem even now: One Size does not fit all. What I mean is, howsoever comprehensive an application may be, individual teams across the globe need “specific” attention to focus areas specific to them. In the final part of this series, next week, I would tell You how we achieved this as well.