Why PRS needs Business Intelligence

Success for the Business Intelligence (BI) team is all about getting the right information to the right people, to be used at the right time and in the right way.


What do the BI team do?

Success for the Business Intelligence (BI) team is all about getting the right information to the right people, to be used at the right time and in the right way. We’re often faced with millions – sometimes billions – of lines of data to work with. So every time someone listens to one of our members’ tracks on Spotify, hears music in a big department store, or listens to a chart-topping radio station, that’s data we collect. On its own, each play or line of data might not tell much of a story. Our job is to make that data into something more meaningful and, in doing so, we can give teams a solid basis for making insightful decisions.

It’s been three years since the company launched its Business Intelligence Strategy, an initiative set up to support the business in managing the amount of data that PRS for Music has access to, helping teams to work faster, better, smarter and more efficiently.

So far we have delivered over 20 projects that have significantly improved the way teams within the company work, from helping identify which of our members’ works have been played, right the way through to modernising the way we pay out those all-important royalties.

The benefits

Our work aims to streamline processes, making the most of the available data to provide greater insight and save time. In doing so, our projects have provided many benefits across the company. For example:

  • Enhanced reporting supports decision making and investigation work, which helps us to highlight repeated inaccuracies in the music usage data we receive. High profile licensees have put corrective system changes in place because of our insight.
  • One-off errors in music usage reporting are also easier to pick up, challenge and correct, meaning we’re able to pay out with even greater accuracy.
  • Manual work has been replaced with automation, which frees up more time to work on other projects.
  • Thorough planning, documentation and testing of new initiatives means our data is more secure and better organised.

Online Statements

One of our biggest projects to date is bringing member statement information online, which will make it possible for members to analyse both current and historical earnings, and keep an eye on trends. In short, adding the kind of capability and insight that our members need.

With over two billion rows of data and a requirement to support up to 60,000 statements and 300 million individual usage royalties per main quarterly distribution, this is a data challenge by anyone’s standards.

Continued support

The use of Business Intelligence is growing here at PRS for Music, meaning we’re in a better position than ever to manage the huge amount of data we have access to. And by championing its best use we will continue to support the work of those around us, either directly for members by bringing statement information online, or indirectly through giving internal processes a boost.

Written by

Cerian Squire
Cerian Squire
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