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Moving Data from the Basement to the Boardroom

Basement to boardroom blog

According to IDG, 35% of companies with effective data grow faster year-on-year, however, many still take little notice of data quality or ongoing data management, pushing it into deepest corners to eventually be abandoned and forgotten.

If this sounds like you, it’s time to consider putting data at the top of your business agenda again…

DQ Global Making Data Fit For Business

Big Data – a neglected but important aspect of business survival

As stated on Forbes, more data has been created in the past two years than in the entire previous history of the human race. This has led to the phenomenon known as ‘big data’. However, as we know its importance today, things weren’t so peachy a few years back. According to the report from Pricewaterhouse Coopers (PwC), even in 2015 only a small percentage of companies reported effective data management practice.

Moreover, the report found that while 75% of business owners were “making the most of their information assets,” with only 4% were set up for success. This was due to lack of tools and in-house knowledge of an effective data management, as well as disparate data sources. Overall, 43% of companies surveyed “obtain little tangible benefit from their information,” while 23% “derived no benefit whatsoever”.

The dangers of poor data management 

Having no data strategy is an ongoing problem that plagues businesses of today. And, if you don’t take steps to improve your data management, there could be serious consequences…

  • Misinformed decisions
    When data is not managed properly when held in multiple data sources creating siloes, it is difficult to gain a complete view of your business. This has a direct impact on decision making, which ultimately affects your revenue streams.
  • Missed opportunities
    With no historical data or a clear strategy how to effectively manage new information, your business won’t be able to create accurate forecasts or anticipate customer demands. If you don’t know your customers and bombard them with irrelevant campaigns, they will leave your business out of pocket.

Big data takes its place at the boardroom table.  While traditionally seen as an unnecessary burden which is difficult to manage, data has taken a seat at the table as an important tool helping business to grow and increase profitability. But what has changed…


General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) is a new data privacy law coming into effect in May 2018 and is set to overhaul how businesses process and handle data. With fines as high as €20 million or up to 4% of global turnover for noncompliance, the regulations have become a priority for business to review processes and systems for data protection. Check out our blog on GDPR compliance for more information >

The age of the customer

Customers now have the ability to define your company’s success in a matter of seconds. Their expectations are changing and there is no doubt the digital age has transformed the way they shop.  There is no going back to a pre-web mentality if you want to remain agile – satisfied customers spend more. This is where the importance of data comes in, allowing you to not only target customers with the right message at the right time, but also create life-time value, preventing them from switching when a competitor offers a better price.

From discovery to action: Master Data Management

Once you acknowledge the elephant in the room, it’s time to understand all facets of data – what data currently exists, what data they can get, how to organise it and, most importantly, how to put the data to use.

The best way to start is to implement a robust, enterprise-wide master data management (MDM) strategy to ensure the uniformity, accuracy, consistency and accountability of data assets. It is a foundation for a data first strategy that aligns with business objectives to support growth, profitability and customer retention.

As we discussed here, the average business uses up to 13 different applications, therefore data is scattered amongst disparate systems. This results in poor communication between departments, systems and processes, leading to an inability to meet your clients needs and business goals.

MDM breaks those siloes by creating the central source for accurate fully cross-referenced real time master data. It must seamlessly integrate with all data warehouses, business management applications and Business Intelligence (BI) systems to bring the right information in the right form to the right person at the right time.

How to get there?

  • Identify the business value
    Identify the business value of a MDM plan. Think about what you want to achieve and what will help you develop actionable insights.
  • Choose the best IT platform
    A good platform and technology will help you to easily integrate all your data sources. Think about real time access and mobility.
  • Develop a holistic approach
    Involve all business stakeholders as well as culture and internal politics to ensure a company-wide MDM strategy that is beneficial to all.
  • Time to begin your big data journey
    The objective of Master Data Management is to provide and maintain a consistent view of your core business data entities. See how we can help you here >

Written by Martin Doyle

Martin is CEO and founder of DQ Global, a Data Quality Software company based in the UK. With an engineering background, Martin previously ran a CRM Software business. He has gained a wealth of knowledge and experience over the years and has established himself as a Data Quality Improvement Evangelist and an industry expert.