Purpose – Over the past few years, developments in business analytics have provided strategic planners with promising instruments for dealing with turbulent environments. This study aims to reveal whether or not the application of business analytics in strategic planning contributes to better company performance, and to formulate recommendations on how to integrate business analytics in companies' performance management systems. Design/methodology/approach – Based on a survey conducted with 89 respondents from high-technology firms, a group comparison between firms with strong performance and those with weak performance reveals significant differences between the two groups' strategic planning processes and application of business analytics. Findings – The empirical survey's results show that better-performing companies are characterized by a more sophisticated analytical planning process. Lower-performing firms acknowledge this competitive advantage. Based on these findings, the authors develop recommendations on how to integrate business analytics in performance management contexts. Research limitations – The empirical study's results are limited to high-technology industries in the cultural setting of Germany. Practical implications – The empirical results emphasize the competitive advantage gained by applying business analytics. The recommendations concerning analytical performance management should help managers to sensibly integrate the analytical toolbox in performance management contexts. Originality/value – This paper combines insights on the best usage of business analytics from the perspective of strategic planning experts, with recommendations for the integration of business analytics into the performance management framework from an academic perspective.
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