Managing data is like tending a garden. You have your seeds, your tools, and your storage but you need to use all these in concert if you want to grow anything. We all know that the way you tend your garden determines what you get out of it. And if you have a clear system, a well plotted garden, and an organized shed, anyone should be able to quickly step in and give you a hand, without much more communication than the basics.
This is the epitome of good data management. Your data, tools, and storage need to all be part of an organized data analytics ecosystem. And any user in your organization, in any department should be able to ask any question at any time — and answer it. Data is truly your greatest asset when this is accomplished.
What is data management?
Data management determines how your data is stored, integrated, and utilized throughout your organization. You can endlessly collect and store data, but if you can’t access and apply it, it’s useless. When managed well, 100% of your data should be available 100% of the time to 100% of your users, so any user can ask any question at any time. Your data should be actionable, drive outcomes, and prepare your business for the unknowns of the future.
Here are two crucial aspects of data management:
While unintegrated and siloed data remains limited and isolated, integrated data combines data from different sources so it’s easier to manage your data from end to end and create a complete picture of your business. When data isn’t integrated, decision makers can only ask and answer limited questions. But when you focus on integration, users can ask questions about not only their department or one aspect of a customer journey, but about how their department fits into the bigger picture or the customer journey as a whole.
Integration also allows you to ask more questions than when your data is departmentalized. Instead of only being able to ask questions within a specific department or with a fixed set of data, you can ask questions that cross departmental boundaries and utilize multiple sets of data. These kinds of cross-functional questions give businesses a competitive edge and are essential to business success in competitive markets.
Once your data is integrated, the next key step is making it easily accessible to everyone in every department across your organization. Every day, each person in your organization makes decisions that impact the business. If they have access to data and insights, they can make informed decisions with a positive impact. That’s why data management should make it easy for everyone in your organization to access 100% of your data 100% of the time.
Data accessibility drives collaboration, insights, and innovation, and it saves everyone time. Instead of working with departmentalized data and isolated projects, everyone can collaborate on one, unified goal. When working from a single source of truth — your integrated data — department projects can complement each other, more complex questions can be answered, and new insights can be found. By providing your users with the right information, they can make smarter and faster decisions that streamline operations, improve customer service, and boost revenue and market growth.
Planting the seeds of future success
To find business success now and in the future, organizations must focus on data — and they need to go beyond simply collecting and storing data to developing a system that focuses on end-to-end integration and accessibility. Wondering where to start? A modern cloud data analytics platform like Teradata Vantage can be a great tool to help your business gain insights, drive success, and become future-ready.