Necessity is the mother of invention. Most organizations implement new policies, systems, processes, and applications for good reasons: to improve efficiency; save money, time, and effort; and to improve work environments, for example.
Companies have their own processes for discovering business pain. Regardless of how it's discovered, business pain drives the success of the project. In the case of enterprise reporting, existing user interface and application restrictions or data source connectivity requirements and limitations help define the business pain. Crystal Enterprise can be customized to suit most Web delivery GUI requirements and connect to virtually any data sourcehence, the reason Crystal Enterprise and its associated report design tools (Crystal Reports) are looked to when solving these types of problems.
Business pains should be documented, concrete, specific, describe the business issue rather than any technical analysis, and taken directly from as many key stakeholders as possible. That way any project success can be evaluated against the initial pain. Key stakeholders feel themselves more involved in the project and therefore more interested in its success when they are directly interviewed regarding their needs. Business Intelligence pains are particularly sensitive to end-user pains, as one of the key benefits of the system is increased decision-maker efficiency, which is very dependent on how end users perceive data.
The project administrator should take pains to explore the root of the business pain: business pains are typically confused with project requirements or generalized statements of need, leading to inappropriate solutions. For example, "We need a reporting solution" exemplifies a solution looking for a problem, rather than a business pain. A business pain might be: "It takes all 10 people in the finance group three hours each Monday to calculate and distribute the latest budget versus actuals variances." Note that the business pain naturally leads into a Return on Investment (ROI) analysis: a great foundation for any project.