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Market research from Gartner maintains that, in the digital era, analytics needs to be infused into every role, business process, decision, and action.
That’s a very worthy goal, but one that many companies have yet to achieve. In fact, when Deloitte recently surveyed 1,000 executives at large companies, a full 67 percent of them said they weren’t comfortable accessing or using data from their tools and resources. This indicates that, despite the rise of big data and analytics over the past decade, organizations are still missing out on achieving insights from their data to drive decisions.
To move from having analytics solutions in place to having analytics solutions in place that actually work for the business, companies need solutions that are easy to use and easy to access. These solutions need to be figuratively hidden from users because they’re simply part of the operation, like electricity powering an office. To find the right solution, companies need to ask these key questions.
Will It Work for Me Today and Tomorrow?
Today’s innovative companies are sharing analytics beyond the boundaries of an organization with customers, partners, and even certain departments inside companies. The analytics industry has responded with technology that can, for the first time, deliver analytics to hundreds, or even hundreds of thousands of users. Many of these users are seated on the frontlines, or the exact “point of work,” where a well-informed decision makes or breaks a customer interaction. The solution should scale as you do, meaning it works for your 10 customers now and your 100 customers a year from now and so on as you grow.
Will It Change as Fast as Business Conditions Do?
The COVID-19 pandemic has underscored just how fast businesses have to pivot when local, regional, and global conditions change. Access to good data will enable organizations to make smart choices when needed to change. Any analytics solution needs to be constantly improving with frequent iterations to keep up with mission-critical business demands.
Is It Customizable?
One size rarely fits all with data and analytics. Companies need solutions that fit their needs, whether that enables them to define their own metrics and their own ways to analyze data or not. If companies use analytics at the point of work or as part of a business process, the analytics must work because it’s an essential part of the business. When business cannot happen because technology fails or lags, customers don’t get the service they need.
What’s the ROI?
This will depend on how much your solution costs versus what you hope to save or gain because of improved use of analytics.
The McKinsey Global Institute estimates that advanced analytics will enable industries to create $9.5 trillion to $15.4 trillion of value. To get there, organizations across industries need to leverage analytics to make more informed strategic decisions. They need to find novel and useful insights in data and then turn those insights into products and services — and make a profit doing so. But as companies have already discovered, becoming a data-driven organization requires changes in people, processes, and solutions.