3 minute read 4 Dec 2019
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Why balancing innovation and risk is key to embedding data analytics

By

Katie Lalor

Ernst & Young — Ireland (EY Ireland) Data Analytics Director and Digital Audit Lead

Dedicated professional. Always rises to the challenge. Enjoys the French countryside during holidays.

3 minute read 4 Dec 2019

The Data Analytics Maturity Study identified that 78% of companies see analytics having a real impact on business strategy but 60% identified lack of budget and organisational commitment as an issue.

Governance is an essential component of developing a business analytics capability. Data has never been more available and it’s helping organisations reimagine how they do business. As we grapple with the pace of technology change, we also grapple with the pace of regulatory change, around GDPR and areas like e-privacy.

However, driving technology implementation as well as balancing privacy and risk requirements can be a challenge. In the recently published Data Analytics Maturity Study 2018, Governance concerns like GDPR and data privacy scored highest on the framework, with organisations showing significant differences in how they approach the issue.

From an operating model and technology perspective, putting the citizen at the heart of your process is vital. The key is to understand your exposure and then access the solutions, so that regulation does not stifle innovation and the two can co-exist.

The penalties for compliance breaches are one of the top risks for audit committees and boards in major organisations. The reality is that demonstrating your level of compliance with GDPR and other regulations, is going to become a requirement of doing business. If you can’t do it you’re going to be at a competitive disadvantage.

Adoption challenges

The Data Analytics Maturity Study identified that 78% of companies see analytics having a real impact on business strategy but 60% identified lack of budget and organisational commitment as an issue.

To kick off any analytics project, you have to invest sometimes without absolutely knowing what the impact will be. For those who do invest, 62% of respondents are seeing a positive and measurable impact on the bottom line.

To drive change in organisations we need management to understand the value of analytics and emerging tech and nurture an environment for them to have the biggest impact.

Awareness is one of the key aspects of demonstrating compliance with GDPR. When you begin to factor in technology and the massive amounts of data available, you realise that cultural transformation is vital.

Compliance is evolving

Increasingly we are seeing companies leverage technology and more strategic solutions to cope with their ongoing compliance needs. It’s about the operating model and processes you adopt but also how compliance is going to evolve, including looking at more technology enablement and automation to cope.

For citizens, being able to view, access and control their own information is fast becoming essential.  We are already seeing this in user-centric and user-managed technologies and business models.

Focus on the problem

The key to successful adoption of analytics and emerging technology is focusing on the business problem you are trying to solve first. Once that problem has been defined, you can understand how to turn data into insightful information, and then look at the technologies. Technology should not lead the conversation, it’s the business problem that must lead the process.

We are already seeing our clients leverage technology and data analytics to manage risk, look at trends and patterns of activity, identify fraud and gain insights around their processes.

Undertaking a Privacy Impact Assessment to understand the impact on the citizen and the associated data is one approach. You can then discover if you should be doing something differently and put those critical learnings at the heart of your operation.

Summary

In the recently published Data Analytics Maturity Study 2018, Governance concerns like GDPR and data privacy scored highest on the framework, with organisations showing significant differences in how they approach the issue. 

About this article

By

Katie Lalor

Ernst & Young — Ireland (EY Ireland) Data Analytics Director and Digital Audit Lead

Dedicated professional. Always rises to the challenge. Enjoys the French countryside during holidays.