home Customer Experience, Insights and Data The foundations of a modern data-driven organisation

The foundations of a modern data-driven organisation

Customer 360 is essential to connecting with customers

As many of us know only too well, key to knowing our customers is listening to them, connecting with them both directly and indirectly, through an ever-increasing number of communication channels. 

Keeping ahead of today’s connected consumer is a complex business. It involves combining disparate but connected data points about where and who customers are with and what they are doing. It entails capturing huge volumes of data, on a variety of data types, each of which are potentially moving at different speeds. This data then needs to be harmonised in a way that presents a unified view of the customer journey and ideally a real-time view of their likelihood to perform certain actions.

Strategy and culture are core components of a data driven organisation 

Like most labels, “data-driven” is not a binary, black and white measure of capability. Organisations live on a continuum, varying in how sophisticated their data is and the extents to which it influences management decisions. 

Any article on what it means to be “Data Driven” makes references to Data Strategy, Data Culture and Decision Culture. One always leads to another. 

Data Strategy: I’ve heard countless definitions of what strategy is and it gets appended to just about everything to make it seem more important. The definition that I have found most useful is that by Richard Rummelt, Emeritus Professor of Business and Society at the Los Angeles Anderson School of Management:

“The kernel of good strategy consists of a diagnosis of the challenge, policies for dealing with it and cohesive actions.”

One of the most important factors influencing Data Strategy is an organisation’s cloud strategy. A common emerging theme within enterprise organisations is CIOs are challenging CDOs to move a significant portion of existing enterprise data platforms to the cloud in the next 18 to 24 months. A cloud-first policy might therefore be a crucial part of your data strategy.

Data and decision culture: Related to the policy or principles of strategy, we have behavior and values. Peter Drucker famously said, “Culture eats strategy for breakfast”.  A world class strategy, which does not align with views, social norms and how people and teams work together is not going to be effective. Data culture is

“Senior leaders setting and reinforcing a set of shared beliefs and values around data that shape employee perceptions, behaviours and understanding of how to use data to make better decisions.”

While this definition may seem a little high-level, this is one area that has a strong and clear connection to how technology can support decisions. 

A good starting point on how to manage and draw insights from data begins with having a clear view of the customer. 

Providing teams with access to data insights at the right time, supported by a culture of making data- driven decisions leads to an overall improved customer experience. Real-time data can also be translated into insights which are made available to customers and support staff.

Ultimately, all pathways lead to the customer

Reaching new levels of customer centricity is only possible through becoming increasingly data driven. This requires a strong and clear data strategy supported by a commitment to develop and nurture a data and decision culture. Ultimately, all paths should deliver the best value to customers.

Daniel Hand

Daniel Hand is the field CTO APAC for Cloudera - a leader in Enterprise Data Cloud Management. Daniel has spent the last twenty years in senior leadership roles within high-growth, disruptive technology companies including AWS, Red Hat and now Cloudera. Daniel was a founding member of N1 Analytics, a privacy-preserving analytics platform developed by Data61.