With so many companies adopting a data-driven decision-making approach, experts in data analytics and business insights have been able to uncover what works and what doesn’t, the best practices, and smart strategies for the process’ implementation. One of the best ways for a company to approach this endeavor is by assessing to what extent their decisions are currently being driven by data. This is not complicated to suss out. Organizations that use a data-driven decision-making strategy have characteristics that differentiate them from ones that don’t:
While this is what a data-driven organization looks like, it is not necessarily a checklist for achieving the data-driven decision-making process. Companies need to take foundational steps in order for these characteristics to become fully integrated across their entire organization.
The pathway to becoming a data-driven organization is not an easy one, but it can be done with time, consistency, and leadership. The following steps will help you develop a roadmap for data-driven decision-making in your field:
1. You need to identify a data champion within the organization, who critical to understands the value of data-driven decision-making and is willing to dedicate time and effort toward getting the workforce on board. Typically, this champion is a c-suite executive who has the budget allocation and authority to implement change.
2. This data champion should identify key groups within the organization who are leveraging their data effectively or identify particular project successes that hinged on data analysis, then highlight these projects and teams internally, through webinars, newsletters, and other means. These types of successes are crucial to getting buy-in from leadership and developing a mind shift among the staff.
3. Once there is more interest in becoming data-driven and leveraging big data, the company should offer internal training to train up existing staff on these data techniques. When you offer continuous training across teams, your workforce will develop a common data vocabulary and feel empowered to explore more data on their own.
4. Additional ways to speed up adoption include developing a community of practice, scheduling monthly lunch-and-learns from data experts or data colleagues, and highlighting successes frequently.
While you may feel an urgency to adopt a data-driven decision-making process, there is no overnight fix. Don’t take shortcuts or provide inconsistent support – remember, if you fail to plan, you plan to fail. Executives should work toward a holistic plan that builds up data usage and knowledge over time in order to get the highest returns on investment. Instinct. Intuition. Experience. Data. Those are the four ingredients you need to make data-driven decisions and drive your company forward into the data revolution.