The Data Difference – What is ‘nonsense’ and what is ‘not’?

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As more things around us go on-line and people interact to leave a trail for a digital life pushed by the changing trends  of ‘mobile’ and ‘Internet-of-Things’; data is becoming the new source of power. It is the raw material that business needs to harness and harvest to gain insights into their customer and unlock previously dormant productivity potential.  When plugged in, businesses will have a new sense of real time (the NOW) by aggregating data that will provide a new dimension to business decision-making – leading to greater opportunities. However with this avalanche of new data comes another threat – understanding what data is ‘nonsense’ and what data is ‘not’.

Just because it is possible to see a numeric figure and/or a platform is outputting a set of numbers or putting a construct to unstructured dialogue; unless it is viewed through a  ‘lens’ of strategy; it is a ‘nonsense’. While this data driven era will need businesses to change their perspectives on the value of data; it will also require them to cast a new framework to their operating data dashboards ensuring that data ‘nonsense’ is discounted and data ‘gold’ in mined.

  1. Continuous Data Census and NOT Sample

With the growing application of data – hidden value is being revealed. Small data samples aligned with snap-shots from the past are showing a different result to data collected and analysed as an on-going census with a view to understanding relationships and connections. The integration is providing for greater insight into routine behavioural habits and patterns for product and offer development that will meet emerging and existing needs. It allows businesses to keep in-touch in real-time with the changing external forces that are effecting their everyday business operation and changing customer forms. Historically based samples are now becoming ‘nonsense’ for decision-making.

  1. Depth and NOT Volume

When accessing data aggregating platforms, the number to understand and base decisions on is not necessarily the highest, rather it is the one that unlocks the greatest depth to meeting the needs of the customer. In the digital era, growth will not come from size, it will come from becoming personal with your customer – business dashboards need to adjust to understand the difference. Reporting on volume is now becoming ‘nonsense’ for decision-making.

  1.  Strategy and NOT Noise

In an increasingly data-rich world, businesses need to have a keen awareness of the difference between being led and leading. The overriding principle is to make the data work for you and not work for the data. With many platforms spilling out data reports, the challenge will be for businesses to understand what information will feed and guide a more informed strategy perspective and what will dilute the business decision potential advantage. The digital era will deliver opportunities for businesses that are agile and allow for better and faster strategy decisions – allowing ‘noise’ to cloud the vision will dilute potential quickly. Data not aligned to strategy should be viewed as ‘nonsense’ for decision-making.

Understanding and harnessing the value of data is the new source of advantage – businesses need to reshape to internalise its power.