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Today’s CEOs crave tools that will empower them to tap into better insights they need to make smarter business decisions. Recent research from market research company IDC reveals that businesses investing in the establishment of a data culture (platforms, solutions, and employee training) stand to gain a 60% improvement on the return on their data assets.
Key insights are needed to fuel decisions that support business strategy and planning, help organisations cut operational costs, and assist in identifying consumer shopping trends and patterns. Investment in the right tools can potentially have big payoffs for organisations and ultimately result in the business gaining valuable insights.
Better insights drives smarter decision-making
Consider the impact of the US-based Red Robin restaurant chain’s decision to test a new hamburger across the franchise. To achieve this, all of the chains provided frontline waiters with devices on which to input customer feedback — likes and dislikes — about the burger. Normally, this kind of testing, feedback and response would take around 12 to 18 months. This time, however, Red Robin was able to get a new, improved burger onto the menu within only four weeks.
An additional benefit also came out of the project in the form of improved staff retention and work satisfaction levels. Red Robin’s employees were much happier since they felt they were making a difference for the company and its customers, and ultimately felt more like they were a part of the company.
Insights like these can be delivered by analytics tools that simplify the laborious task of staying on top of the latest business intelligence (BI). These tools and solutions enable users to easily explore and present data, and confidently make predictions or projections that are required for a future outlook and planning.
These tools can provide the building blocks needed to connect data, refine and analyse it, and deliver insights to decision-makers who can take action. This has the added benefit of shortening research and development cycles.
The democratisation of BI
Analytics used to be a sole bastion of data scientists, but modern analytics solutions have empowered every employee, since any one of them can be provided with easy access to the BI and interactive data visualizations solutions required to make more informed business decisions quicker. These solutions are fast becoming delivered through familiar software, such as Excel, meaning that the uptake among employees can be higher — making the overall benefits they they deliver more accessible to a bigger pool of people.
This provides a huge injection for a company’s overall BI capabilities as the uptake of the BI tools will be quite high, which in turn, delivers many more insights that can fuel critical decision-making.
BI tools provide all employees with the information and insights they require to become more effective in their respective roles. For instance, these solutions can help a company’s CFO and COO collaborate better when it comes to planning, forecasting, and drawing up budgets, helping the company to cut costs, streamline operations, and anticipate future demand to adjust supply as needed.
Analytics has undergone many changes in the last few years and its use is no longer merely relegated to statisticians and data scientists. Business analytics can now be used by virtually every employee so that an organisation can maximise its insight gathering capabilities to deliver better BI that helps the firm remain focused on the future to perform better in the present.