How Can Industrial Companies Make Their Business Data-driven?
“When we have all data online it will be great for humanity. It is a prerequisite to solving many problems that humankind faces.” – Robert Cailliau, engineer, computer scientist, author
A data-driven culture refers to the ideal operating environment that aims to make good use of data in order to improve efficiency in different business operations. It can also be defined as a principle that gives focus on information from existing data to be utilized as a basis for making crucial business decisions.
In the past, business folks have been extremely dependent on their intuition and personal experience every time they face a certain scenario that can bring a big difference to the fate of their company. But times have changed, and ever since the emergence of the World Wide Web, many entrepreneurs today are keener to integrate a data-driven culture within their organization because of its promising potential. What are the reasons behind such phenomenon?
Data-Driven Culture: What You Need to Know
In the modern world dominated by technologies that slowly surpass the capability of the human mind, data can be considered as the king. Data contains an almost infinite amount of information especially those that can be analyzed computationally to identify specific patterns, associations, trends, that are usually related to how humans behave. An example of this is the Big Data, a set of enormous volumes of both structured and unstructured data that cannot be easily processed by traditional database and software techniques.
Applying tools to understand Big Data proved to be an extremely valuable resource for most businesses. In fact, according to a study, nearly 50% of companies have already spent a significant amount of money in big data and more than 70% of those are planning to reinvest for the same purpose. This is because Big Data can be an efficient tool in identifying what the customers want and how they behave to specific scenarios.
With the help of a thorough analysis extracted from the Big Data, companies can make some adjustments according to the preferences of their customers in order to optimize their daily operations and ultimately earn more sales in the long run. They don’t have to resort on making decisions based on what they observe and what they think is right because data is already there, waiting to be automatically processed to serve the same purpose. In other words, data simply opens opportunities for businesses to stay competitive and maintain their progress. Hence, the usage of data leads to the existence of a unique culture which generally revolves around the use of data.
Business leaders or executives around the world who deeply understand the essence of data are often very assertive to see data used regularly throughout their organizations. Some companies would have their own ways to collect data across their businesses, but most of it ended up being completely unused. Take note that several of the biggest companies in the world that thrive on large amounts of data such as Facebook, Google, and Amazon have one thing in common: they are all able to commit themselves in embracing a data-driven culture.
Benefits of Having a Data-Driven Culture on Industrial Companies
In some environments where things could become pretty hectic like an industrial company, making quick and accurate decisions is a must. Manufacturing goods is a complex process, and problems could arise at any given time. Fortunately, establishing data-driven culture can negate or at least minimize most of the common issues encountered by those working in industrial companies. Thanks to data, they can now:
• Identify any issue, especially in manufacturing;
• Analyze those issues and formulate both main and alternative solutions;
• Know their trade on a deeper level;
• Apply solutions to those issues as fast as possible
The implications of being data-driven don’t end there. One specific group of people that can massively benefit from a data-driven culture are the business executives. Strong and competitive leadership plays a major role in the success of a business, so other than making the right decisions, executives can also improve their leadership through the use of data by:
Sharing insights on business performance. Data that are collected from emails, presentations, or meeting discussions provide the executives with a chance to have more meaningful discussions with their employees about the organization’s overall performance and productivity.
Conserving precious time on meetings. Executives are known to spend most of their time in meetings. Many meetings especially in business purposes in particular tend to be very time-consuming. While a lengthy meeting sounds like a good idea, a recent study suggests that shorter meetings can make employees three times more productive. But how can executives speed up the time of meetings without compromising all of the critical things to be discussed? The answer lies in data. By reviewing key metrics and developing action plans based on the results of the review, data can be used as a guide to keep the continuous progress of the meeting agenda and make it more focused and productive for everyone.
Educating the workers on how to properly utilize data. It is just not the executives alone who must cultivate data skills for the sake of business. They can also provide data skills training to their workers to ensure that everyone can properly accomplish task and relay orders that involve the use of data. It can also be a viable method to strengthen the data-driven culture of a company.
Displaying vital data via digital displays. If an executive decided to present vital business data such as key metrics in prominent public locations through digital displays, it sends a message that such metrics and targets are all collective possession of the whole organization.
Be more observant of the company’s progress. While it is less likely for many executives to log into an advanced analytics tool, they can still be great leaders by having access data that can give them specific points that can be asked on their departments and teams. This gives the workers the impression that such executives willing to be involved in every step of the company’s pursuit of success.
Tips for Building a Data-Driven Culture
Creating a data-driven culture within your industrial company is not an easy task. It will require the right time, effort, money, and most important thing of all, willingness. Even if you’re capable of purchasing the appropriate resources needed to get this job done, it won’t still give you the assurance that you’re going completely data-driven indeed.
There are several ways of how industrial companies can build their own data-driven culture within their business. These are:
Making data accessible
The fundamental step towards turning your industrial company is by giving your employees access to specific data that can be used to analyze the progress of the company’s day-to-day activities. It may be true that data is generally considered as a precious and delicate asset. But as long as you will make some safety measures as well as rules in utilizing them, you are now one step ahead on to a data-driven culture.
Promote data literacy
Having access to data should always come with developing the skills of your employees when it comes to handling them. Give them a mandatory training to augment their knowledge especially with these three key areas:
• Descriptive statistics – Basic methods of summarizing data
• Inferential statistical test – Detecting specific changes such as sales between weeks
• Data visualization – Understanding concepts to boost comprehension and problem-solving skills.
Set vision and goals
In addition to making data accessible, you must also be clear with your purpose and intentions as to why you wanted your company to embrace a data-driven culture. Do you have any goals in particular? What will you do once you achieved your goal? Let your staff know the reason behind your campaign and make them realize the promising potential of data. In this case, you have to use rational arguments and points so that it will be easier for your employees to understand what you’re aiming for.
Use data as you make decisions
Having enough data is utterly useless if you don’t know how to use it to your advantage. Data is there to give you certain pointers and guidelines as to what options you have, and what is the best thing to do in case you’re facing a problem.
Integrate data on your daily inventory operations
Being data-driven opens a lot of opportunities for you to make the job of everyone in your industrial company more convenient. If your employees can simplify some of their time-consuming tasks, they can focus a significant amount of their efforts on other essential things that can further help your company’s cause. For example, try integrating data on your daily inventory operations with the help of ESLs (Electronic Shelf Labels). Though such technology is more prevalent amongst retail businesses nowadays, ESLs are also designed to become efficient data-driven tools for those enterprises in the industrial sector.
How ESLs Help Elevate Your Data-Driven Culture Campaign?
For industrial companies looking for ways to automate their warehouse inventory as well as their logistics management, ESLs are definitely the best option. These tags with digital display contain data that can be updated and changed in real-time. Unlike traditional paper tags, ESLs can provide the employees with a wider variety of information which can greatly aid in daily operations such as restocking.
ESLs can be used to provide access on vital warehouse information about the shelves, containers, machines, and could even display alerts in case there’s a sudden decline in the levels of inventory. And because the information is showed accurately, it negates the errors caused by human handwriting method and reduces the unnecessary expenses on paper-based documents.
If you are interested to learn more about SOLUM ESL Solutions and how we can help your industrial company take advantage of wireless connectivity to improve your workforce and operational efficiency, contact us or visit our website today at www.solumesl.com