How to Become A Data-Driven CompanyPublié le 20 September 2022
Get your organization on the path to continued growth and success by learning how to become a data-driven company this year and beyond.
What’s the most valuable resource for growing your business in the 21st century? You might be saying ‘money’. Well, it certainly helps, but how useful is money on its own?
With cash at your disposal, you could spend thousands of dollars marketing, or even more. But what if you then found that you’d been beaten by a competitor that spent a fraction of your budget?
What was their secret to success? Data. In the modern world, data powers everything. With the right data, we can learn more about our audiences than we ever thought we could. This includes insights into demographics, locations and even their interests. With this information, we can create better marketing communication and maximize revenue from every cent spent on marketing activities.
Of course, it’s not all about marketing. Data can improve practically every aspect of our businesses. This includes smoother workflows, better customer support, superior customer onboarding, and much more. It’s hard to overstate just how important data is for businesses in the modern world.
Of course, knowing what to do with your data is easier said than done. And for many businesses, the idea of sifting through pages and pages of spreadsheets can be headache-inducing.
With that said, what can you do to become a more data-driven company today?
Have the Right Analytics Tools
What’s the point of having data if you don’t understand it? As time progresses, your business will collect all sorts of data. This can be from people visiting your website, through interactions with customers, through the use of your product, through touchpoints with sales and more. But if this data is to be useful, you first need to understand it. This is where data analytics tools come in handy.
There’s no specific analytics tool that can handle all your data. You’ll need different tools for different aspects of your organization.
Google Analytics to the rescue
Let’s look at one essential analytics tool, Google Analytics (GA). This is Google’s flagship analytics software; it can provide detailed reports about the visitors that come to your website.
If you need proof of GA’s popularity, you only need to look at this statistic; 28 million websites operate the software. If a website is successful, you can bet that it’s running GA. The tool has received constant updates over the years, and today it can provide even deeper insights than ever.
The latest version is Google Analytics 4. It’s crammed with features that are designed to give you the best analytics data possible. There are many benefits of GA4, these include:
· A new data model – You can now measure very specific user interactions using a feature known as ‘events’.
· The ability to track users across different devices – Today, the average user owns an average of 16 connected devices. Being able to track users across their devices helps us to better understand them.
· Free integration with BigQuery – If you’re a big company collecting lots of data, this is a feature not to miss.
If you’re still using one of the earlier versions of GA, now is a good time to migrate to GA4. This can be a little tricky though. So make sure to use a GA4 migration checklist to ensure a steady transition and avoid headaches down the line.
Build A Data-Driven Culture
It’s all well and good having the right technology, but if you’re really going to make the most of data and learn how to become a data-driven company, your work culture needs to change.
There is a good reason why culture has such importance in business. A company culture should embody your organization, its values, and overall approach. With the right culture, people will believe in the goals and values of your organization, and work towards them. A successful culture isn’t just shown from those at the top, it should be found in all your employees.
But how do you build a data-driven culture? The following steps should help.
Define Your Data Goals
The first step to building a data-driven culture is understanding how data is going to affect your organization. What role can data have to create positive improvements? To begin answering these questions, you’ll need to create a clear roadmap.
For example, you’re probably gathering data from your customer support. How can this data be used to improve the department? Let’s imagine you have a problem with queuing. Queries aren’t being resolved quickly enough and customers are stuck waiting. You can use data on past calls to allow agents to find resolutions more quickly. This means less time spent waiting and ultimately, happier customers.
When planning your roadmap, you should list issues related to each department and how data can help.
Allow Time for Training
Part of creating your roadmap is knowing how you will equip staff with the right skills to work with data. Sometimes it’s tempting to shy away from training, as it can be expensive and time-consuming.
But there’s no doubt that training is effective. In fact, 92% of employees saw their engagement levels increase as a result of training. The fact is employees want opportunities to increase their knowledge and grow within the workplace. Training also doesn’t necessarily have to mean sending workers on a course.
Training can take many forms, including:
· Online resources – You can create a library of online resources to help employees better understand how data will affect their jobs. These should be made available at all times and be accessible from different devices. Some staff might prefer to study on their own time and/or their mobile device.
· Shadowing – There may be some employees that are already familiar with working with data-driven systems such as change data capture, data transformation, and more. If not it might be an idea to hire some new talent. Have less experienced employees work alongside more data-savvy staff. This can be an opportunity for workers to learn more about new systems and familiarize themselves with working with data.
· Bring in an instructor – An instructor (in-person or online) might cost a little more, but it can be one of the most effective options. This gives your employees an opportunity to speak to a data expert, learn the ins and outs of new systems, and ask questions.
Encourage Data Sharing
One of the biggest data flaws for many businesses is a lack of collaboration between departments. If you want to become a data-driven company, there needs to be a dialogue between teams.
For example, the sales department could share data with the product team. Sales talk first-hand with customers, meaning that they’ve had an insight into their needs and wants. This information can help inform the creation of new products.
The human brain processes information 60,000 times faster in the form of visuals rather than numbers or raw data. Take advantage of different types of visualization such as Sankey diagrams, Likert scale charts and many more while sharing data to save time in reading multiple pages reports.
There was a time when businesses could collect all sorts of data, with little to no concern from customers regarding how it was used and of the implications for their own privacy. Those days are now over. Today, people are much more aware of their data and how it is being used. This growing awareness about the potential danger of data misuse has brought about new legislation that has altered how organizations can handle data.
For example, the European Union has introduced the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). Under GDPR, a business cannot gather customer data without first having their consent. GDPR compliance is important, and there are hefty fines for breaking the law.
For this reason, it’s important that all data that you store and collect is compliant with the law. You’ll need to take time to familiarize yourself with different legislation worldwide. It might be a good idea to bring in a data expert to ensure that your data activities are fully legal. Your customers deserve to know that you have done everything possible to protect their data, and a repudiation for data security and data protection will only benefit an organisation.
Build a Secure System
Security should be a top priority when dealing with data. You’ll be handling lots of sensitive information. Any data leaks can have a serious impact on the lives of your customers, not to mention making your company look less secure.
Cybersecurity is becoming an ever-increasing priority for businesses. The stats speak for themselves, 66% of small- to medium-sized businesses have experienced a cyber-attack in the past 12 months. Your business needs to be prepared to defend the sensitive data provided by customers against potential breaches.
This means investing in the right firewalls and antivirus technology. It also means educating your employees on the importance of cybersecurity issues. Make sure that staff knows how to ensure that data is kept safe.
Be sure to have a contingency plan in place to prepare for any data breaches that do occur. You’ll need to be ready to inform customers about attacks, and of the steps that they can take to ensure their information remains as secure as possible.
Start Building a Data-Driven Company Today!
Data isn’t going to become any less important. As the world becomes more and more technologically dependent, data is only to become more and more significant. If you’re yet to embrace the transformative power of data, now is probably the best time.
If you don’t make the change, your competitors almost certainly will. If you’re not careful, you could end up being left behind. This is why it is so important for businesses to consider how to become a data-driven company. The idea of this sort of transition can be daunting. But as we’ve explored, there are many steps you can take to make this change less dramatic.
So, don’t delay any further. Start building a data-driven company today!