5 Steps to Create a Center of Excellence in your Enterprise

"It's not just about the tool."

That was one key quote from Paul Banoub’s TC On Tour Session. As a director of agile Business Intelligence services at UBS it’s his job to not only purchase and install enterprise-ready applications but also ensure they are adopted by the user.

Paul covered all aspects of managing a service. In this post, we'll focus on how large organisations should invest in managing Tableau as a service.. If IT departments don’t invest in running a service, it will fail. Successfully running a service requires a dedicated team and significant support. UBS implements this in several ways:

Sell it

It's no good to roll out a service to a couple of areas and then stop. It's also no good to try and roll something out to everyone before they have a chance to try it out: that way ensures you'll have users who feel like they've had something forced upon them. At UBS, they maintain a set of trial licenses they provide to teams so that they can Try-Before-They-Buy. This allows them to get comfortable with Tableau before committing to it.

Build a Community

A service manager needs to track the highs and lows being experienced by the users. At UBS they do this by using a community site powered by Jive, and having regular user meetups. They can deal with problems quickly and encourage people doing innovative work. Through a community, they can drive best practice and share tips for effective visualisations.

Support it with correct infrastructure.

This involves choosing the correct hardware and monitoring services. Paul’s team have extended the Server Administration views and customized the home portal. Investing in correct monitoring and response strategies ensures successful uptime.

Continuous evolution is vital.

It’s no good to rest on your laurels and enjoy seeing engaged people. The system must always evolve. Paul described how, now they have visualisation in place, they are looking to implement data mining, data integration, and more.

Make it fun

And why not? Who said work should be boring? Have visualization competitions, give away merchandise, or host social events. You need to sell your service in order to manage it. Can you imagine managing a service that people enjoy using? That’s what Paul has managed at UBS.

Paul’s session was a masterclass in enterprise-deployments of Tableau. Paul blogs about this, and much much more, at vizninja.com. You can also find him on Twitter: @paulbanoub.

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