Although technology is important when talking about data and reporting, there is more to your data success than just the technology you use. Companies also need their data to be driven by their processes, accessibility to information, and people oriented culture where users are empowered to act on evidence based decisions. I think we can all agree that data is imperative and powerful but having empowered users makes that data come alive and tell a story which quickly becomes the basis for effective decision making.
I recently came across a great article in Forbes talking about the different level of commitment in companies towards data initiatives. The big takeaway in this article was that the companies who had senior management and IT executives with a strong buy-in to their data initiatives increased their overall competitive advantage. These companies are performing at high competitive levels and realize that even the smallest improvements can hugely impact the bottom line.
Improvements within a company don’t happen at the snap of your fingers. (And if they do, I’ll be very impressed!) It takes strong leaders that are not just data driven but can understand the entirety of the company from many different hats. If leaders are empowered and trust their employees to have access to the data, they are empowering their company starting from the top-down. Empowered employees result in confidence, commitment and strong decision making capabilities.
Once you have the right business intelligence tool you will have the competitive advantage of data storytelling and when decisions need to be made quickly, the solutions can be validated by the data because your employees will be confident in what they are analyzing.
Do you want users who are confident in their decisions? Or those that are not? Confidence stems from those who lead.