The company is doing well in this difficult economy, but leaders are looking for new ways to grow revenue and increase profits. That stack of old printed reports on their desks just weren’t cutting it anymore so the company has invested in a new data visualization system that provides more insight into operations than the old, standard reporting. The visualizations, dashboards, data mining and other tools allow analysts to discover the golden nuggets that have been hidden and overlooked. These new ways of looking at the company’s performance will allow the business leaders to set strategic goals, make critical decisions, and expose potential problems before they affect the bottom line.
Do My New Tools Tell the Same Story?
This is a big step forward for any company, but how do you gain trust in the new analytics? How do you know that those first results are pointing the company in the right direction? Before using the power of visual analytics to plan the future, take a step back and analyze the past. Take the results of the last five years. The bottom-line has already been determined. Positive and negative performance has been reviewed. Do the new tools tell the same story? Every company has a series of questions they ask to determine overall company performance, set direction, and propose change. Try to answer these questions using the new tools. Do the answers to those questions still hold true or is the new analysis painting a different picture of company operations? If the new analysis is producing the same answers, then the direction should be true. If different answers are uncovered, then it might be time to step back and re-evaluate the direction before getting lost.
What Insights Can I Gain From My Existing Data?
One universal company goal is to find new ways to grow the business. All that data is just sitting there waiting to tell a story. Use these new tools to do data mining and create visualizations of the data to provide different perspectives. What new trends or insight can be found in the existing data that were overlooked in the old reporting? The business should take some time and determine new questions and use visualization to provide answers:
- Is there something common among the top customers that can drive more business?
- Is there something common among the bottom customers that can be improved to increase business?
- How does geographic location influence sales?
- How should marketing advertise based on population density in major markets?
- What is my client distribution across my product lines?
The point is that to successfully grow future business one should also understand past business. Spend time understanding what was successful and build on it. Understand what did not go according to plan and learn from those mistakes. Spend time analyzing the existing data in new and different ways. Think outside the box and those golden nuggets might just make their way to the surface.