Data is at the core of every business and how organisations maintain, govern, and store their data will either hinder or fast-track their efforts to reshape their business models by harnessing the immense potential of data.
With the many changes taking place to respond to our changing current working practices lieu of the worldwide pandemic, there also lies the opportunity for a Data Management review to fully harness the benefits that digital solutions can provide to improve your operations and business performance.
Taking a time out to rethink your current strategy
Much like in several sports like basketball, a time out allows us to take stock and modify our current strategy. A review of your current data management strategy and practices in a time when we are having to make other strategic changes could provide opportunities for a co-ordinated effort.
Cross-functional collaboration will help to reduce siloed actions that may address specific needs but do not take account of the wider organisational picture. The strategy review can also help to provide clarity on feasible options for the future.
A review of current practices using a framework such as a Data Management Maturity (DMM) model for example, will allow organisations to evaluate their capabilities and build a roadmap to accelerate progress in delivering value to the business.
A data management review will allow for the identification of:
- Data quality issues and the need for improved quality rules and data governance
- Regulatory Compliance issues
- Operational inefficiencies (e.g. workarounds, lack of system and data integration) that if addressed would provide considerable benefit in reducing operational costs and improved efficiency
- Legacy systems integrated with old interfaces that are costly to maintain
- The level of readiness for strategic digital transformation initiatives
Now for the team talk
A team talk provides the opportunity for a review and active discussion. The data management review should focus on a current state assessment and a capability gap analysis. Key dependencies should also be factored as they will need to be part of the corresponding implementation plan.
Key outputs of a data management review will include:
- A vision statement
- Programme scope
- Major gaps identified in the current state resulting from a Data Management assessment
- Identification of high-level roles and responsibilities
- Success measures and metrics
- Business benefits
Drafting the new strategy
Keeping with the sporting theme, we are ready to draw up the new plan of attack. Having completed the review, an implementation plan can be drafted. This will typically contain a mixture of remedial changes and strategic implementations that all serve to improve operational performance and achieve strategic objectives.
The ensuing activities need to align to a strategic roadmap. By doing this, goals will emerge that are more specific as they represent desired achievements in quantifiable terms.
Examples of key activities in an implementation plan are:
- Establishing a new governance model
- Implementing remedial improvements in a phased and prioritised manner that eliminate manual processes and workarounds (AS-IS) to better defined business and process workflows (TO-BE)
- Carry out a pilot Master Data Management (MDM) or Data Historian implementation ahead of further phased rollouts
- Implement cloud-based data management solutions for improved data access, scalability, and cost savings
- Deploy solutions that create new market opportunities
Putting words into action
Having had the time out, the team talk and made the required adjustments, we can put to action the cumulative effort of taking stock and producing an improved strategy. The approach should be an agile one that allows benefits to be realised early and incrementally.
The cost benefits of this approach will be both immediate and long term. The immediate benefits will be realised from short term improvements and quick wins. Medium-term and long-term improvements would then follow, and having a strategic approach will have the added benefit of:
- Greater Integrated Operations with users sourcing data from trusted sources
- Improved data availability for business processes that require consolidation and aggregation such as data analytics, business intelligence and KPI reporting
- Reduced project delivery costs through simpler and optimised data and system integration
- An integrated architecture platform
- Incorporating related cyber resilience initiatives
- Improved readiness for unlocking further value by implementing Machine Learning and other Artificial Intelligence solutions
Given timely and accurate data is key for making the right business decisions, a review of your data management strategy will allow you to address operational inefficiencies and risks. Addressing the issues identified in the assessment will bring about performance improvements, increased profitability, and better operational practices.
It will also allow you to improve your readiness to implementing strategic solutions and potentially reducing the cost of these implementations and their ongoing maintenance costs by way of improved Data Architecture and System Integration capabilities.
Contact us to see how we can help you with your Data Management Strategy.