Since my recent move to Brisbane, I have found myself helping several clients with their reporting needs, and Workbench International uses the Sharperlight business intelligence application to do so. I have some time to think about how organisations use their data to maximise their potential while creating reports and dashboards.
Data on a company's business activities can reveal a lot about the company's future direction. Not only that, but it may also assist them in making more educated judgments about how to improve and maintain their business processes. Isn't this a no-brainer?
Step 1. Data Collection
However, to get the most out of their data, businesses must first prepare for its collection. Our clients have been successful in this first step by, among other things, using Workbench software, which ensures that the data collected is relevant and up-to-date. The system assists with organising data to make sense of the company's goals and needs, ensuring that everyone ticks the data gathering box.
Step 2. Data Cleansing
Some clients' data, on the other hand, may require a strategy to capture accurately in order to answer critical business questions, and this is where some companies tend to be a bit more successful than others by keeping their KPIs in mind while installing systems like Workbench. Workbench has very powerful functionality for creating the required project work breakdown structure to support this, but not every company is immediately successful in achieving the balance between the right amount of information needed to successfully manage the project and ensuring data is collected in the most accurate way in the field. Most of us eventually realise that less is more, and here we go, another tick- accurate and clean data.
Step 3. Data Visualising
And this brings me back to the beginning of my post: creating dashboards to visualise data. Client's data must be represented in dashboards to monitor business progress, and managers will be able to view how different components of the business are performing and will be able to offer insights throughout their organisation. This is where some businesses appear to be more successful than others, and I believe that this is one of the primary reasons for selecting solutions such as Workbench and that companies have the structure and reliable data, visualising it will be the icing on the cake. This, however, is not the conclusion of the story.
Step 4. Uncovering Insights
Information needs to be examined carefully. Companies must filter through data for potential opportunities in order to gain a deeper understanding of their business. A data discovery strategy can help businesses identify insights and patterns that will lead to enhanced business performance.
Step 5. Communicating the Insights
And finally, communication. In order for insights to drive the right decisions, they must be properly communicated. This is the final but most important stage of the journey from data to actions that result in genuine business value.