Combine social networking and business intelligence and you get collaborative decision-making. It is a form of business intelligence for organizations that want to help their employees make decisions with their best resource, people!

Because of the “SharePoint affect”, a phrase used in the book, SharePoint Deployment and Governance Using COBIT 4.1: A Practical Approach, sites, lists, and documents are being created and stored in large quantities. As you may know, SharePoint Server 2010 document libraries and lists now scale out significantly. Note that administrators can use a new feature that places limits. Organizations can quickly be overwhelmed by information and the problem requires some techniques to help filter. For this reason, you may consider using some of the social computing features available in SharePoint 2010, to help narrow to the most useful BI assets.

What is collaborative decision making (CDM)? Wikipedia offers the definition: "a recursive process where two or more people or organizations work together in an intersection of common goals — for example, an intellectual endeavor that is creative in nature—by sharing knowledge, learning and building consensus. " (Wikipedia)

Consider the following document library as an example of CDM principles at work.

CollaborativeDecisionMaking

These are business intelligence reports, all of which are dynamic PerformancePoint scorecards and dashboards. The rating system to the right demonstrates that ”leadership that can be social” and puts decisions in the hands of those that review dashboards, scorecards, reports, perhaps daily. This type of feature improves the level of trust in business intelligence assets.

In SharePoint Server 2010, business intelligence assets can include the following.

  • PerformancePoint dashboards and scorecards
  • PowerPivot reports
  • Visio diagrams
  • SQL Server Reporting Services reports
  • Excel files and Excel Services workbooks

When report and dashboard authors produce and store files in SharePoint Server, there is a simple method for giving users the ability to vote on which assets are the best.

How to add a ratings feature to your page

  1. Go to your page.
  2. To enable ratings, from the Library ribbon, click Library Settings.
  3. Under General Settings, click Rating Settings, and choose Yes.
  4. Go back to the list of documents to see that Rating (0-5) is added to the end of your document library.

You can customize the document library by adding a Features column or other column. Consider setting an item limit and sort by Created.