Industries rich with data, such as the Financial Services industry have made huge progress by generating analytics that result in benefits in revenue growth, return on investment (ROI), and risk reduction. Data is a true Strategic Asset for those companies who use the data to effectively stay above the competition in an ever-increasing digitalized business ecosystem. These benefits derived are not just confined to Financial Services but to all industries serious about their data.

The build of the Strategic Asset Data (SAD) is a key competitive attribute of any Target Operating Model (TOM) for all industries. Digitalization of workflow processes is enabling this data build up; workflows that are holistically integrated into operational processes and wider business functions create a powerful foundation for the organization’s competitive edge.  The need to integrate the workflows and the decision-making into the analytics process is critical for sustainable superior decision-making.

To generate actionable business insights with analytics, business executives and leaders now have the confidence to employ analytics as a game-changer compared to the gut feelings of the past, which is an important component of a truly holistic approach to Digital Business Transformation (DBT). The constraints of past thinking, including experience and assumption-based insights, are being replaced by standardized analytical tools that provide hard facts that drive innovation and superior decision-making.

While deriving insight is fairly straightforward, it is what the business does with the insight that matters – quick decisions and fast implementations produce competitive advantages.

Some key attributes for strengthening insight through analytics are;

  • Good data quality, derived from organizational digitalized workflow processes that are integrated holistically with the business functions of the organization.
  • Developing this “clean data” and a single source of the truth is the key to providing impartial decision-making. Analytics that are derived from an effective and standardized process that has not been corrupted is clean and will enhance business insight.
  • A good understanding of how to use analytics to enhance business insight which results in better decision making.  Unapparent business inquisitors can only be answered by knowing what sort of Data and Analytics methods are needed.
  • Management’s strong adoption of the need for enhanced analytics whilst trusting and relying on the data should not be underestimated; especially when the organization is going through a transformation phase. The real challenge is accepting the organizational reality, that new analytics often requires new organizational behavior. A disruptive change in corporate behavior and culture may be needed to accomplish the task.
  • A close collaboration between the business and the analytics teams is important to ensure the maintenance of integration with the wider strategy of the organization. Businesses that are most successful with leveraging analytics recognize the need for executives to have a strategic plan in place. It is recognized that there is a big gap between best deployment practices and the ad hoc approaches experienced in the average business.

To build the SAD and to optimize the ROI in Analytics – DBT is key, and organizations should  focus on four interrelated initiatives:

  • To build the organizational culture around analytics, with executive leadership displaying commitments to the data-driven decision-making process through setting clear strategic and operational objectives for analytics.
  • To ensure that analytics are deployed throughout all the core functions of the business and well-integrated into the workflows and daily practice for all staff.
  • To develop strong analytical skills inside the organization and encourage strong collaboration between business users and analytics experts.
  • Create strong metrics for analytics success, and develop a test-and-learn culture that can make the analytics development process more participative and results more definitive.
  • Enable a robust feedback system to capture errors and enhancements that will be reviewed and redressed on an impact-based priority system.

There is nothing new in stating that to have clearly established processes, practices, and organizational conditions is a pre-requisite for organizational success. The differentiator here in this report is that we recognize that digital business transformation is a key enabler that is acted upon with a priority, driving commitment and enhancement to analytics is a major payoff in ROI and in sustainable competitiveness.