Data can be overwhelming and confusing. We know that it’s not just about having the right tools, but also knowing how to use them. It’s hard enough to keep up with the latest technology, let alone figure out how it all works together.
But if you don’t know what your data is saying about your business, then you can’t take advantage of it. That means missed opportunities and lost revenue for your company.
We help companies get the most from their data by providing expert services that are tailored to meet each client’s unique needs.
1. START WITH THE BUSINESS questionsLook to your business strategy and see what questions you have that would assist in moving you towards achieving your business goals. Many people start with their big piles of data, and this does not work out well. If you are battling to find the correct questions, use the questions below to stimulate thinking.
- Could the data help you understand your customers better?
- Could our data help you offer better products or smarter services?
- Could you use data to improve internal processes?
- Could you use data as an asset to drive revenue? This one can lead to alternative revenue sources.
2. THE QUICKEST PATH TO VALUE WILL ENSURE ONGOING BUDGETS.In many instances we see people building large Data Lakes and integrating all their data prior to adding value. Budgets can run very thin in these cases. Try to define a very important problem and solve this. Once the business sees the value they get on board and start pushing to answer more questions and the budget flows as they have already realised value. Often the ROI for the first project can fund your data journey.
3. DEFINE THE DATA REQUIRED, IDENTIFY YOUR DATA SOURCES, AND BRING THE DATA INTO A SINGLE SYSTEM.
In this process our customers generally realise the extent of data sources they have. TechConnect generally use cloud storage as the place where the data is centralised. This is so much easier than in the old days of SQL data warehouses. The formats and structures of the data are not important at this stage and the storage is cheap, so concerns on volumes of data become a thing of the past.
4. ENSURE YOUR DATA IS SECURE.Cloud storage is the beginnings of your data lake and one needs to make sure you build with security in mind. Cloud Providers can be extremely secure, but it really does depend on your setup. We have seen many recent examples where companies have been excited to get on the journey and come very unstuck due to security.
5. Keep costs as low as possible.
Understanding the speeds of retrieval and manipulation of the data to ensure costs are contained as well as your users are not frustrated. The Cloud providers have many services to ensure optimal data retrieval speeds and they all come with different costing models. Mistakes in this area can be very costly. Always ensure your data and your compute are decoupled wherever possible. Often getting the experts involved at this stage can save you a fortune in the long run. If you are budget constrained, TechConnect run a free Well Architected review with a Data and Analytics lens. Set things up as you see fit, but there is no reason not to get us in to check your work.
6. Great visualisations are where the stakeholders are wowed.
Please do not just use Excel!! There are several excellent visualisation tools. The most popular we use are PowerBI, Quicksight and Tableau. We generally advise the customer to use the visualisation product the stakeholders are most comfortable with. We will be doing a blog on the Pros and Cons of each of these tools in the near future.
7. Know when to build or outsource to a partner.
I can paint my house, but I am useless, it takes me ages and I would hate my life whilst trying to get this done. Painters can seem expensive, but the Psychologists bills to get my head right when I am finished would more than likely be even more than getting a professional to do the painting. In the same way, we are the data specialists and can run you through from the initial strategy to you having all your questions answered securely and cost effectively. Often this ends up being more cost effective than going it alone.