Looking after data should be the responsibility of everyone in the company.
Unfortunately, in most companies, this is not the case. Instead, data is usually seen as something that is the responsibility of the IT department.
This is an outdated way of looking at data. It needs to come out from the IT department and be put to good use across the organisation.
Data is not a silo
Data is the most valuable asset in the company. It informs intelligent decisions and empowers staff to set targets and meet them. Data-driven companies such as Amazon, Über, Facebook and Google are already among the most valuable in the world - more organisations ought to ask themselves how they can become more valuable through intelligent use of data.
However, many companies – most of them, in fact – fail to use their data efficiently. Data management is often piecemeal, with data stuck in silos with little central control. In addition, the volume of data is continually growing, making data management a bigger task than it was only a few years ago. The number of devices that produce data keeps increasing and they are forever getting better at what they do. Companies that fail to take action are falling further behind with each passing year.
The vast volumes of data that need to be managed can be a perceived threat to organisations, but it can also be an opportunity. Those that manage this challenge better than competitors will be the winners of the future.
Plan for longterm - this is a journey
Help is available. Artificial intelligence and machine learning can assist organisations dealing with large data volumes. The culture of organisations can change, empowering staff to take charge of the data, making the role of data and it’s transformative qualities everybody’s business.
It is a long journey, not a quick fix. But starting the journey is an inevitable first step and the sooner this is done, the better. Successful companies will learn to ask for help to plan the way forward.
An example of how one company started its journey is provided by a large telecoms company, where NTT DATA helped improve the measurement of customer satisfaction.
The company was only measuring transactional Net Promoter Score (NPS), a measure of customers’ opinions of transactions, to evaluate its performance. While this was an important metric, it was not the only one. Other factors also needed to be taken into consideration and the reporting was increasingly seen as incomplete.
A dashboard was built that displayed much more of the available data as key performance indicators. NTT DATA also provided a holistic view of how the business performed against competitors. The result was an enriched suite of customer metrics, understood and adopted across the digital teams, that is now used to inform decision making.
When it comes to data management, companies generally need to set their sights higher. Data is not a mystery, it is the result of actions in the real world. By improving data literacy in the organisation and working collaboratively with a team of experts, companies can make good use of the wealth of information that exists and achieve their long term vision.