By Mark Benson, CTO, Logicalis UKI
I had the great pleasure last week attending and speaking at our joint Logicalis and IBM Business Intelligence & Analytics event in London, alongside some of IBM’s data and AI experts, Matthew Robinson and Louis Regan. From hearing about IBM’s future technology roadmap and how IBM tooling can deliver greater insights, it was the open conversations between customers and Logicalis and IBM experts that was truly insightful. Here are the key takeaways I learnt from the event:
- Data is a key asset to every organisation and todays CIO faces more challenges than ever from data proliferation, budget and skills constraints, the ability to be agile to supply requests to their organisation and the dilemma of bringing the heritage and new world together.
- Organisations really want to have access to reliable data to allow them to make measured business decisions, however as a recent survey in Information Week highlighted 59% of businesses cite accessing relevant, timely or reliable data as the biggest hurdle to Information Management and Business Intelligence adoption and success.
- Companies have a large amount of data, however only a small percentage of that is being utilised to make business decisions. In a recent Forrester survey it was suggested that as little as 0.5% of data is being used for analytics, yet around 33% of a companies data will provide great business insights.
So, what can organisations and CIO’s do to mitigate some of these challenges? For me there are three things that organisations need to consider:
- Create an improvement plan for the business around data – This starts with the team of people and the best people are those experienced in data. Provide the team with the relevant tools to analyse and understand the data within the organisation. Review the policies the business has in place and deem whether they are fit for purpose based on the companies direction. Everything starts with the process!
- Identify your most critical data – through the first stage of analysis you will build up a good understanding of the data you hold. This is the time to engage with the wider business to prioritize any data quality issues you have unearthed. It is also important to take the business on the data improvement journey with you and providing insights into what you have discovered and the potential impact to the business is critical at this time to get the buy in.
- Make Data central to the business – Once the business recognises the importance of data quality, now is the time to put data at the heart of business activities. Look at existing projects you are working on and choose some quick wins to show how data quality has made a big difference. Look at setting up a data steering group so data is regularly monitored and improved in line with business objectives and finally embed data governance into all projects the business undertakes showing the business value of good quality data.
Sounds simple, right?
If your organisation is struggling with data quality, processes or even just where to start, please feel free to email me or contact our experts at Logicalis to learn how we can support you on unlocking the business value within your data.
Mark Benson LinkedIn