Ready for takeoff?

Strategic solutions

Preparing for takeoff

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Is it possible to overcome these difficulties in order to unlock the value of your business’s data? Here are seven steps to follow as you seek to drive value.

  1. Decide what you want to achieve with the data
    Rather than starting with the data, you should come up with different hypotheses based on the decisions you need to make. Then use data and analytics to prove or disprove these hypotheses.
  2. Determine what is relevant
    Your company should focus on a relatively small amount of data to identify current and anticipated problems. With a better idea of which issues they wish to tackle, you can start to work out how to capture the data you need.
  3. Continue driving business benefits
    The success of big data and analytics endeavors will ultimately be judged on the basis of their impact on profitability: through lower costs or through higher revenues. That is why your organization needs to develop ways to measure the specific impact of your data efforts.
  4. Prepare for the transformation across the organization
    In order to extract the full value from big data, all strategic functions — CEO, CFO, CIO, CMO and CSO — need to work more closely. C-suite executives need to embrace this change, and empower senior executives and the rest of the organization to adopt it.
  5. Generate insight from data
    This is about practical considerations like data storage, analytics tools, and the availability of talent. Create specialist roles, such as chief data officer and chief analytics officer. Consider building a center of excellence to provide a single point of focus and a platform for information exchange and the sharing of insights. This may also resolve some of the skills shortages.
  6. Generate value from insight
    Your business needs processes and systems that will disseminate the generated insights throughout the whole organization. A data strategy driven from the center will not be successful if it does not apply to the rest of the business.
  7. Manage risk
    The need to minimize and mitigate risk will be an ongoing challenge. Risk-planning, scenario mapping and fire-drill-type exercises will build awareness throughout the business of key risks, and an emphasis should be placed on flexibility, adaptability and responsibility.

The demanding and ever-changing legal environment represents the most important risk of all.