As the new year approaches we all begin to dream about what the future holds for us. Everyone begins to make New Years Resolutions and promise they will change for the better.
Will this be the year my business really takes off?
How can I change my business to be more lucrative this next year?
One of the best ways to make changes in your company and ensure you stick to them is to implement a more efficient plan. Big Data Analytics is an excellent way to be more efficient- and the more efficient you are the more money you save.
Businesses must know how to use and manage their data in order to benefit from it. Here are three tips on how to utilize Big Data in your business to ensure the biggest ROI.
Hire the Right People
In order to understand Big Data it must be analyzed. This takes a certain type of person with strong mathematical and analytical skills. Data Scientists must be able to understand the different coding languages and crunch numbers quickly. This is a job that is not for everyone, but is a profession that is growing in popularity due to a high demand for analysts.
Use What You Have
If you already have an IT team be sure to utilize them, chance are they already have the basic knowledge needed for Big Data Analysis. By training the resources you already have you save your business time and money that would otherwise be spent on the hiring process. Having a strong team of data scientists is what sets successful companies apart from many others.
Don’t Be Afraid to Ask for Help
A lot of companies that use Big Data are not Big Data experts by any means. Depending on the company sometimes it is cheaper and more efficient to outsource your Big Data needs. There are an array of companies that specialize in Big Data contract work for other companies and can be a great asset when it comes to understanding your data.
The best way to make sure you get the most out of your Data is to look at your company and decide how and where Big Data can be most useful to you. Every company is different and therefore will use Big Data in different ways, but if you follow at least one of these tips you are heading in the right direction for improving your company this next year!
Big Data has proven itself a loyal tool to businesses, but one must know how to use Big Data to release its full potential. Here are a few tips on how to utilize big data to make more accurate decisions and see your business with better clarity.
Start small when introducing big data into your business. Don’t try to apply Big Data to your entire business at once, start with a small section and work out the kinks there. Once that test has proven true, start to utilize Big Data in other areas. This is the best way to make sure you are catching even the smallest problems within your business.
Be Clear and Reasonable
The easiest way to get out of hand with Big Data is to allow data fetish to sweep you off your feet. Many people believe they can just bring Big Data into their operation and voila! All of their hopes and dreams for their business have come true! Not so much. Businesses must clearly define their goals and put them in metrics, or something that can be accurately measures. You can’t just say ” I want to be successful by next year” you must instead define your goal as ” I want our ROI to be X amount by July of 2016″. Expectations must be realistic and clearly defined to see progress.
Not All Goals Are The Same
You cannot apply the same goal to every aspect of your business because they are all separate. Variable must be taken into account and adapted for when deciding the ROI’s for each project. It is important to remember in order to have clear, measurable success, you must start with being very specific. Make sure you consider the differences between projects and adapt accordingly.
Big Data is an extremely useful resource in the business world as long as it is applied correctly and managed tightly.
In the continuously evolving world of business, perfection is a moving target. Companies design processes to provide services, manufacture products, or deliver on promises to customers efficiently and effectively, within time and budget constraints. But in just the time between process design and implementation, the marketplace changes. Keep business optimization in mind to keep your organization moving forward.
It’s a virtual certainty that there’s room for improvement in even the most elegant process or system. Don’t rest on your laurels when it looks like things are humming along. Instead, to optimize business, examine the data and metrics you’ve gathered and see how your company is performing against expectations and against industry peers. With an open mind and expert guidance, you’ll find opportunities that can transform the organization.
Establish Business Optimization Goals
Ultimately, every company should seek greater customer satisfaction. A business optimization effort designed to increase customer satisfaction will increase your competitive advantage and may allow you to enter new markets. Of course, increased profitability is an eternal goal for any business. By continuously improving existing processes, a business optimization project can reduce costs, reduce defects, improve productivity, or increase revenues for a demonstrable return on investment.
Select Business Optimization Opportunities
As you pursue growth and improvement, the smartest first step is to engage a seasoned business optimization adviser. Your adviser’s objectivity and expertise will help you identify high-impact opportunities. Draw on your business intelligence – a combination of company key performance indicators, performance compared to your industry, and what you learn every day from customers. Work with your adviser to analyze this data annually with find high-potential, cross-functional areas for improvement that aligns with your long-term strategic goals.
Ensure Business Optimization Success
Business optimization begins with the right people and the right methodology. Your trusted advisor will help analyze your situation and identify improvement opportunities, but that shouldn’t be the end of the engagement. Maintain a consultative relationship between the advisor and the internal employees who developed the process that will be improved, and who will carry the business optimization forward.
Once you’ve identified the project, pursue business optimization by applying a systematic approach using the appropriate methodology. Six-sigma projects achieve long-term defect reduction where the final outcome may be unknown. Other opportunities may call for a more direct or immediate approach.
Gathering the right business optimization team is a critical piece of the puzzle. Seek out subject matter experts on the processes that will be addressed. Your team should be a blend of people with open minds who will consider alternative solutions, along with devil’s advocates who will keep the group grounded.
Be sure to establish controls in the project that will allow you to demonstrate improvement. Whether your investment is just the team’s time, or the significant expense of a new automated system, you must prove a return on that investment. Incorporate controls that will point out the project’s impact on business metrics such as increased productivity, reduced cost, or greater customer satisfaction. Proper controls will allow you to monitor progress along the way and make adjustments if needed. Ultimately, these controls will prove business optimization results, whether that means getting an under-performing organization up to target, or moving from satisfactory performance to an industry leadership position.
Finally, celebrate success. Business optimization is a time-consuming effort that deserves recognition. Honor the people involved and their achievements. In addition to raising team morale, you’ll build enthusiasm for the current successful project, and for future business optimization efforts.
Business Optimization, Customer Satisfaction & ROI – by Lucile Williams, Six Sigma Master Black Belt
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