Leveraging Your Data for Better Business Decisions

Learn the reasons why organisations are struggling to leverage their data for informed decision making and what can be done to solve the issue.

Data is a powerful tool to manage nearly every facet of the business and produce better data-driven decisions. Yet, we often cannot use the data the way we want. Here are some of the reasons why organisations are having trouble leveraging the data they are collecting.

Struggling to Harness Your Data? Here’s Why 

They call this the Zettabyte Era. In 2012, all of the data created in the history of mankind added up to 1 Zettabyte. By the end of 2020, that number has ballooned to 59 ZettabytesIt is so large it is almost impossible to think about. That is on the magnitude of 59 trillion Gigabytes or 59 billion Terabytes. 

Whichever way you think about it, it is an enormous amount of data, and it is not slowing down. Is it any wonder that many of us are struggling to capture, store, search, and interpret the data we need in today’s business world? 

Data is a powerful tool to manage nearly every facet of the business and produce better data-driven decisions. Yet, we often cannot use the data the way we want. Here are some of the reasons why organisations are having trouble leveraging the data they are collecting. 

It starts with the way our IT infrastructure has evolved. 

Legacy Systems 

Legacy systemswere not built to handle the data-driven demand that exists in businesses today. It can take a lot of manual effort to produce the weekly or monthly reports that business leaders want. Even when it is pulled together, it may not be in a form that is easy for people without an IT or data analysis background to understand. Real-time data may not be available. Even if it is, it may not be accessible to those that need it in a way that is easy to visualise. 

Data & Business Intelligence 

These legacy systems may not be integrated to provide users with a complete picture. 

Think of the story of the blind men and the elephant. The blind man touching the tail thinks it is a rope. The one grabbing the leg may conclude it is a tree trunk. Yet, the one holding the trunk itself might think it is a giant snake. All of them have drawn conclusions based on their limited access to the data at hand but none of them can make the correct analysis that it in fact is an elephant. 

Blind Men and the Elephant

 Image source: Pixabay.com 

Does your data show you the elephant or just part of its anatomy? 

Internal Skills and Platforms 

Most business leaders today have grown up using computers. They are comfortable with financial worksheets, spreadsheets, and looking at data. Yet, very few C-level executives besides those in IT have much experience with data analysis. It takes a different skillset to analyse data, verify it, and draw the insights necessary to make smarter business decisions. 

Unfortunately, most businesses have failed to implement the technology to bring all the data together and use platforms that can tell the story. There is also the issue of accessibility. 

Being a Data Detective 

Often the best insights come from being able to examine data and see where it takes you. You need to look at the data before you can frame the questions you want the data to tell you. 

Here’s an example. You might be able to tell at a glance that you have missed the revenue target for the quarter. However, you will have to dig deeper to find the root cause. Is it a lack of activity in the sales pipeline? Is it poor lead management? Are sales teams unable to close? Is it a product or pricing problem? Is it a lack of satisfaction with customer experience? The answers to each of these questions (and more) may be buried in different platforms or hidden in layers of data that are difficult to detect. 

You cannot get to that data if you cannot do your own digging and reporting. Many of our systems do not allow C-level executives to become data detectives and uncover the insights they need but do not know to ask about. 

Leveraging Your Data: Solutions 

So, how do you make the changes you need to use technology and data effectively while mitigating risk and minimising spend?  Download our Whitepaper, Solving the Challenges of Data in Legacy Systems: A Guide to Modernisation, and learn how Version 1 can help you modernise, transform, and accelerate your IT for better data-driven decisions. To get in touch with one of our experts, simply fill in the form below.

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