Santa Wish List from a Data Analyst
*as told by Dr Rado Kotorov, chief innovation officer at Information Builders
I’ve had a good hard think about what I want for Christmas. 2015 has been a good year for me – my work is valuable and I can see the data I’m analysing will save my business a lot of money.
However, I sense we still have a way to go before the data truly fulfils its potential. With that in mind, what I really really want for Christmas is to see my analysis properly monetized. By that I mean I’d like my analysis and recommendations to become clearly embedded in a real operational application that helps those employees on the front line make more money for the company.
Let me explain further.
Santa, I have been so good this year, churning reports and analysis day after day. But, at the moment, the only option for sharing my recommendations with the rest of the business is via PowerPoint presentations, so each day I write up my analysis and send the presentation to my colleagues.
Though my reports are good quality, something is not quite right with this method. I have estimated that I can save my company millions of dollars through using the data properly. But time and time again, the same answer that comes back to me from management is: “We have zero ROI on our analytics!”
I was puzzled about how my hard work wasn’t reaching employees, so I spoke to one of the people who work in this field during my lunchbreak. I asked him if he had seen one particular PowerPoint on how he can service customers faster with better information. He looked at me and said, “What PowerPoint?” He told me that if I want to make his efforts more productive, he has to get the answers to his questions on his phone or tablet while he is working. He winked at me and said “I have no time to analyse and search for information; I need the answers to close service tickets quickly.” It’s fair enough, as he gets his bonus on the number of deals closed.
The truth is, our business intelligence isn’t doing the job it should be because it isn’t easy to use. Management isn’t happy; the employees aren’t happy; and I’m definitely not happy, because no-one is benefitting from the hard work I’m putting in.
So, Santa, what I’d like is for everyone to start loving my business intelligence again. If management invests in tools that embed my analysis in easy-to-use applications, then everyone can benefit from my insights much faster and more productively! And who knows, I might even get a bonus for suggesting it!
Thank you, Santa and Merry Christmas!