Updated: Apr 7
As an SME leader you know your business inside out, you are passionate about your product or service and probably wear many hats to ensure the day to day running of your business.
You’ve heard lots about data and how it could support the growth of a business but not really sure how to apply it to your business.
But does it always seems to be so time-consuming to get any insight or data that you need to make any useful decisions?
Is it sometimes easier to make decisions based on what you have done before or what you think is the right thing to do as data is just too difficult?
We often hear:
‘Our data is rubbish’
‘Can’t get to the data we need’
‘It's too difficult to track’
‘Not sure how data can help’
Has using data and insight become de-prioritised as you can’t see the value it brings based on the effort that is required?
If so you aren’t alone.
74% of businesses say they want to be “data-driven” but only 29% are actually successful at connecting analytics to action - Brian Hopkins (Forester)
Why is this the case?
All businesses have data nowadays, collecting data at differing points to service their customers.
But having the data is just part of the story - knowing what you want to do with it is just as important. Having a data mindset, combining strategic thinking, critical thinking and data literacy to determine:
How can it support your business objectives?
What are the key questions you want to ask to be able to make better decisions?
What data do you need to answer them?
Data is imperfect and reliant on it being captured, tracked, managed, governed and analysed for it to become useful. Akin to a garden that will become unwieldy over time if not properly looked after or the right things being planted.
A data strategy is an ongoing programme not a one-off project
Today you might not be able to answer all the questions, but determine what is stopping you, is it accessibility? missing data? or limited skills? Develop a prioritised plan to overcome these barriers focussing on what's going to make the biggest difference to the business.
This becomes your data strategy that builds over time as you get more confident in developing your data mindset and seeing how using data can grow your business.
This can sound daunting, expensive, complicated and time-consuming. Especially, when you are already busy and have limited resources and budget.
But it doesn’t have to be. You don’t have to build a data centre equivalent to Amazon to be able to create a data-driven approach that delivers value to your business.
The key is to focus on what questions you want to answer as a business and then determine what data and tools you need to support this.
We help businesses build their data strategy plan and articulate what it will means for the business, if this is something that you need help with drop a line to firstname.lastname@example.org and we can set up a discovery call to see how we can support you on your journey.