Dan English's BI Blog

Welcome to my random thoughts in regards to Business Intelligence, databases, and other technologies

Archive for May, 2014

TDWI Minneapolis Chapter Event: BI Strategy, KPI’s and Leading Indicators – June 10

Posted by denglishbi on May 23, 2014

The next TDWI Minneapolis Chapter meeting has been scheduled for Tuesday, June 10 and it will take place at the Hilton in Bloomington, MN. The meeting will feature Laura Madsen and she will be talking about BI strategy.

http://tdwichapters.org/Minneapolis (or http://www.tdwimpls.org/)

Here are all of the details:

When: Tuesday, June 10, 2014, 8:00 a.m. – 12:45 p.m.

Where:  Hilton Minneapolis/Bloomington

3900 American Blvd. West
Bloomington, MN 55437

Click here to register for the next upcoming event


8:00 – 8:30 a.m. – Networking and Registration
8:30 – 8:45 a.m. – Introduction and Chapter Business
8:45 – 9:30 a.m. – Healthcare Business Intelligence, Laura Madsen
9:30 – 10:00 a.m. – Break and Networking
10:00 – 11:00 a.m. – Continued: Healthcare Business Intelligence, Laura Madsen
11:00 – 11:30 p.m. – Q&A – Discussion
11:30 – 12:45 p.m. – Closing Comments & Wrap-Up

Click here to register for the next upcoming event


"BI Strategy, KPI’s and Leading Indicators"

Laura Madsen spearheads strategy and product development for the healthcare sector and works with key accounts across the country in the provider, payer, and healthcare manufacturing markets.   Even if you are not in the healthcare industry, learning about how they proactively monitor and measure their key performance indicators will still be fascinating and give insight on how other industries could learn from their lessons.

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Minnesota Microsoft BI User Group 2014 Q2 Meeting–June 3

Posted by denglishbi on May 22, 2014

The next MN Microsoft Business Intelligence User Group is coming up on Tuesday, June 3. This meeting we will have two presentations starting out with a presentation on effective visualizations and the second one is a case study by Polaris on using the Microsoft BI tools to monitor warranty claims and resolve quality issues. Please register so that we can have your name badge pre-printed.image

MN Microsoft BI User Group 2014 Q2 Meeting

Sponsored by:


Date: Tuesday, June 3, 2014image

Check In: 2:30 PM Event Time: 3:00 PM – 6:00 PM

Location: Microsoft Technology Center – 3601 76th St W, Suite 600 Edina MN 55435 (in LOW 1, 2, and 3)

Please Register Now (Please register so that we can have your name badge pre-printed)


  • 2:30-3:00 : Registration
  • 3:00-3:15 : Microsoft BI User Group Updates & Announcements
  • 3:15-4:15 : Show Me the Numbers: Five Principles for Creating Effective Data Visualizations
  • 4:15-4:30 : Break
  • 4:30-5:30 : Using Microsoft BI for Early Warning, Warranty and Quality Management
  • 5:30-6:00 : Social and Networking


Session 1: Show Me the Numbers: Five Principles for Creating Effective Data Visualizations

Data visualization skills are essential in today’s data environment. It allows for actionable insight and faster decisions. Data visualization is a key skill in the current data and analytics mission and the Microsoft BI and Office tools are important delivery vehicles for organizations looking to make sense of their data with great charts and dashboards.

However great visualizations require that we make good decisions around a few essential design principles. Many of us don’t consider ourselves as designers or well-equipped to make good design decisions. This session will try to help by validating the important role of data visualization and provide five principles that are key to extracting value from your growing data environment. These five principles are distilled directly from great data visualization thought leaders like Edward Tufte and Stephen Few. You will explore these principles with specific best practices that work, sprinkled with a sampling of charts and approaches that fail to deliver insight. We will explain why that 3D exploding pie chart that you occasionally see was not designed with these principles in mind. Additionally, the session will provide resources that you can use to help you make good decisions and to get inspiration.

Speaker: Don Frederisken

Don Frederiksen (@donfred) is currently Data Services Manager at G&K Services where he leads a team of data and business intelligence professionals. G&K Services, Inc. is a service-focused market leader of branded uniform and facility services programs in the United States, and is the largest such provider in Canada.

As a veteran information architect and manager, he has shepherded the launch of business intelligence and data management programs at four different companies. As a BI developer he has created dashboard solutions at two organizations. As an educator and entrepreneur, Don has over twenty years of experience in helping professionals and organizations understand and maximize their technology investments. 

Session 2: Using Microsoft BI for Early Warning, Warranty and Quality Management

Polaris Industries, a pioneer in the snowmobile industry, is one of the world’s largest off-road vehicle manufacturers. Polaris needed much better visibility to component failures on products. Warranty claims account for a significant amount of money and some components failures could even possibly result in safety concerns. By providing advanced notice of failures, the service and engineering teams can react faster to remedy the issues by quickly getting answers to questions like, ‘what components have the most failures over time,’ ‘what regions have the highest number of claims and why,’ ‘how many average miles on units with claims,’ and many other metrics.

In this presentation we will see how Polaris leverages data and Microsoft BI tools to make it easier to monitor warranty claims and other data to spot and resolve quality issues swiftly in order to achieve and maintain its commitment to quality.

Speakers: John Antholz and Michael Wissink

John Antholz has worked in IT as a developer, DBA, Data Architect and manager for over 20 years, and is currently the BI Manager at Polaris Industries. The past five years he has been focused on how companies can leverage data as a strategic asset by working to implement business intelligence solutions in a cost effective manner, which offer flexibility for all levels of the organization.

Michael Wissink has spent the past two years working in Business Intelligence and SharePoint Administration at Polaris. He has experience using many different BI tools and has done everything from ETL in SSIS to dashboards in PerformancePoint. With development experience in QlikView, PowerPivot, SSIS, SSRS, SSAS and PerformancePoint, he has a broad skill set and has delivered many quality analytics solutions.

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PASS Business Analytics VC Meeting–May 29

Posted by denglishbi on May 20, 2014

The next PASS Business Analytics Virtual Chapter meeting is coming up next week. This month’s meeting is going to be talking about Power Query.

Here are the meeting details:

Date: Thursday, May 29BAVCLogo

Time: 4 to 5 p.m. (CDT)

Session: As data sources proliferate integration is becoming a key part of the analytical toolkit. Join Lee on a fact seeking journey as he uses Power Query to integrate and shape data.

1. Self service data integration – fact or fiction?
2. Power Query 101
3. Introduction to M
4. Data Enrichment

Presenter: Lee Hawthorn (b|t) is a Chartered Management Accountant who is responsible for BI and planning and analysis. Lee has worked on several BI projects. His battle scars have healed since Power BI arrived in his tray.

RSVP URL: http://bit.ly/PASSBAVC052914

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