Becoming a Data-Driven Organization: A 5-Part Framework for Sustainable Data Quality

In a previous post, we’ve established that data needs to be clean in order for organizations to make sound decisions, gain a competitive advantage, and improve the bottom line.

But, before jumping to fix your data issues, it’s important to establish a framework that ensures the data will be usable in the long run—not only immediately after a big cleanse, which is often time consuming and expensive. This 5-part framework provides a comprehensive approach for addressing existing data quality issues, and prevent issues from arising in the future.

5-Part Framework for Sustainable Data Quality

Let’s explore each step in detail.

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Data Is to Business as Water Is to Life

It goes without saying that data is critical to make strategic decisions, to run operations, and to perform business functions.

  • Healthcare companies derive analytics from clinical and claims data to meet quality measures, improve care, and better manage high-cost and high-risk populations.
  • Manufacturing companies rely on performance data to improve efficiency, increase yields, and lower costs.
  • Retailers rely on data to predict trends, forecast demand, and optimize pricing.
  • Financial services organizations perform advanced data analytics to drive revenue and margins through operational efficiency, risk management, and improved customer intimacy.

All of these scenarios require vast amounts of data. Regardless of industry or company size, nearly every business is relying on gathering and leveraging data. Being a data-driven organization is an absolute necessity to gain a competitive advantage.

IT is uniquely positioned to have access to a comprehensive set of data which is stored on or passes through the company’s infrastructure. IT, therefore, carries a responsibility to provide end users access to this data, and to play a vital role in its effective use.

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Shining a Light on Shadow IT

Too often, Shadow IT systems—those not authorized by IT—are used by the business to perform work. Here are a few common examples:

  • A cloud storage system (such as SharePoint) may be authorized and managed by IT, but employees may use external cloud applications (such as Dropbox or Google Drive) when working with external vendors.
  • A collaboration tool (such as Slack or Basecamp) may contain important information and documentation that are effectively invisible to the IT portfolio.
  • Vast spreadsheets may exist across disparate programs, requiring manual reconciliation and long email chains for even the most minor changes.

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VIDEO Getting Your Money's Worth from JDE Software

Getting Your Money’s Worth From JD Edwards Software

Implementations start with the best of intentions and the highest of hopes, but most organizations we work with fall short on outcomes from their system investments. JD Edwards is no exception.

This is completely normal: IT projects have enough trouble staying on time, on budget, and on scope. So what do you do now?

Watch this video for my advice:

(If you enjoyed this clip, please consider subscribing to our YouTube channel.)

Tweet: Dissatisfied with #JDEdwards?
Here’s your path forward. @mpapov https://ctt.ec/X3WSt+

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Podcast

PODCAST: IT Outcomes & Internal Customer Satisfaction

I was pleased to be interrogated – er, interviewed – by the talented Cassie Crossley on her new podcast, Tech Leaders Today.

Please take a listen to uncover:

  • our recruiting and staffing approach
  • IT’s biggest problem today
  • stories of how we solved 2 different clients’ problems

Excerpts from our conversation are transcribed below.

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That “Status Quo” IT Approach Is Putting You at Risk

You’ve heard the phrase, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.”

There are many areas in business where that advice may hold true, but your IT assets are not one of them.

IT assets—including hardware, software and data—start deteriorating the day they are acquired. Yet the tendency today is to purchase, install, and then promptly forget about a technology. Few people or companies realize that when it comes to IT assets, maintaining status quo carries great risks.

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The Case For Customizing Software

The Case for Customizing Software

There is ample evidence that, in general, “software customizations are bad.” (So much so you might have nightmares where software customizations are vampires, haunting you, refusing to die in peace.)

But consider the other side of the coin: the risk of an organization going along with canned software functionality. This can downgrade an organization’s business practices to “average,” causing them to lose out on opportunities to improve performance.

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Underutilized Software Revealed in 4 Complaints

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Complaints @mpapov http://ctt.ec/dIbrf+

If there is an underutilized software package in your organization, and if you’re listening, you’ll likely hear a complaint or two about it. These complaints are symptoms that, if undiagnosed, will fuel negativity and friction.

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Neglected, Indebted or Gold-Plated: Which Type of IT Do You Have?

We came across an interesting infographic produced by Bain recently and we couldn’t agree more with their strategies for addressing these IT challenges! Take a look:

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Is Your IT Architecture Designed to Strengthen Your Business Capabilities?

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Business Capabilities?” http://ctt.ec/f6iM6+

For years, consultants have been recommending tighter alignment between IT and business strategy. At a high level, it makes perfect sense. But when you begin to peel back the various layers of organizational complexity, aligning IT with the needs of the business becomes a more complicated exercise.

In order to optimize the alignment of IT and business strategy, organizations must understand the discrete business capabilities that the IT architecture is intended to enhance, and build accordingly. At the same time, the IT architecture needs to be able to adapt as the business changes.

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