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End the data mess blog

Keeping it real

  • Tas Tudor

Be a "Data Have", not a "Data Have Not"

Data is the word of now in so many ways. It shone the light on how governments and businesses should be using the information they have to analyse the current state of play, look for new opportunities and preparing your business for what comes next. Data by itself is nothing, yet it has never been more important to make use of this significant business asset.

Leaders in business recognise that decision making must be done quickly and efficiently, whether it is identifying new opportunities, products, or undiscovered efficiency improvements. The monthly or quarterly Board/Management meeting is becoming redundant for the current economic environment - agile thinking and management styles are rising in awareness.

Something that is becoming apparent is the growing disparity between the Data Haves and Data Have Nots, particularly corporates and SME’s. One only needs to look on job posting websites to see the growth in data related jobs for corporate Australia across all industries, but rarely for smaller and medium sized businesses.

Sure big business has its issues with trying to tie all the data together, but SME's find it difficult as they are not resourced by teams with big banks of data sets, consolidated systems or skilled staff to derive meaning from the data.

But how can a SME be a Data Have? It all starts with processes that can gather the customer and workflow data so that decisions can be made to gain a competitive edge.

Do a SWOT analysis around your business AND data goals. Ask customer focussed questions such as - what do we know about our customers? Where is the friction in the buying process? Can repeatable processes be measured?

Then start breaking it down. What tools do we have? Are they speaking to each other? SME's as they grow often suffer from tech creep. That is they end up combining a series of disparate systems that sort of speak to each other, but data is all held in silo structures, causing decision making insights to be difficult to identify.

Start small - the biggest threat any project is to bite off more than you can chew. Be like Pacman - lots of little bites to get to the end goal.

Look at transitioning to systems that consolidate your valuable data to drive growth. Odoo is a good example of this, a unique open-source ERP that can be used right across your business. Financial, marketing (website & e-commerce/analytics/CRM/social), operations (inventory/manufacturing/logistics), and HR are all easily tailored with quick deployment with Odoo.

Every business is different and has its own unique needs. Having a flexible system that captures your data to become a Data Have, will see you achieve your business goals, improve your customer satisfaction, drive revenue, remove inefficiencies and save money.

Scale It Consulting is a business systems consultancy practice with 25 plus years experience in helping businesses succeed and achieve their goals.