Data being the new oil is the latest cliché, but in truth the value of data has already surpassed the value of oil. However, as we’ve highlighted previously, oil alone can not make an engine function, brilliant human minds and tools are needed for that. Hence, the current market value for Data Scientists and Data Engineers.
Businesses that adapt data driven cultures are more successful, but what does this really mean?
Data can help drive ever more effective decision making when used correctly. It can help drive sales; enhance customer experience; develop, maintain and evolve effective processes; enrich our understanding of where business should go next. The challenge is how to build an effective strategy that is embraced by the business from the top-down, is implemented company-wide and is based on actionable, achievable and time-oriented metrics. A document sitting on a shelf gathering dust is no use to anyone. The strategy needs to be built by the company and adopted across the board.
We have authored a number of pieces that expand upon the key points to ensure businesses truly benefit from the opportunities provided, according to the following themes:
The next step is to develop the Data Strategy. This requires management buy-in as a pre-requisite and needs a clear company wide focus. The business has to believe in the potential benefits and be ready for transformation. How does this happen?
Well firstly there has to be a clear understanding of the business objectives; there needs to be a company-wide needs assessment; and the existing data assets, infrastructure and human resources need to be quantified and qualified.
Once this context has been understood the next step is to understand the potential that can be achieved by maximising the use of existing assets and exploring examples of how other more innovative approaches may yield benefits for the business.
The Data Strategy is the next step and needs to involve senior stakeholders and decision makers from across the business. The output is a prioritised, time-sensitive and metric driven plan, with identified investment requirements and internal/external responsibilities.
iSquared and partners have developed a strategic development framework to help work through all of these phases:
This framework delivers a fast and effective end-to-end strategy development service that transforms businesses’ use of data and analytics. It incorporates all of the necessary requirements, from agreement on initial objectives, context gathering, and cross-functional stakeholder input. The creativity is realised at an Executive Workshop which delivers a prioritised Data Value Map, forming the backbone of the full strategic plan.