With increasing competition and digitalization companies who use information strategically and aggressively would emerge as leaders in their respective sectors. To make this happen every organisation needs a dedicated role to drive the data agenda and who can collaborate with other business units to drive business value.
Following are some of the areas a Chief Data Officer can add value;
- Data Governance The Chief Data Officer can bring in method and discipline around how an organisation acquires and manages data for it to be meaningfully used. Data Governance ensures that data issues are managed horizontally and not vertically. This brings people from different business units together where an organisational view is taken as opposed to a siloed approach. The quality of the data used by the organisation is enhanced as a governance model forces every business unit to look at the processes which capture the data.
- Make the data move Most of the organisations are able to meaningfully use only limited amount of the information that gets collected. Data points that only support monitoring and analysis of the KPIs featuring on the Balanced Scorecard typically get used in a reactive manner. Technology today enables access and processing of huge amounts of data with relative ease and this should be put to use to continuously monitor and study all data points captured by an organisation. The study would reveal both data points which an organisation can capitalize on and the ones which do not really help. Also data has a tendency to decay and necessary enrichment processes would ensure that the organisation at all times uses data which is updated and meaningful.
- Increased Compliance and Reduced Risk A data governed organisation is always better equipped to handle regulatory requirements and also have a deeper understanding of what the key risks are and the related mitigants. Processes which help an organisation closely study which data points undergo change at which touchpoints across a process help in closure of accurate and timely auditory requirements.
- Putting Context to Enterprise data An organization has many processes and every process leads to generation of data. An organization’s capability to marry the relevant data coming from processes across the organization helps arriving at an aggregate data which is more dramatic and powerful than a data set viewed in silo. Adding more contexts to data element leads to a complementary change to the understanding of meaning of the data. Contextual computing can help organizations drive enhanced customer experience, cross sell and fraud detection.
- Getting Customer Data right Organizations striving Customer Intimacy need to get their customer data right. The starting point would be to revisit the customer contact processes which capture these data points and carry out a root cause to understand the reasons for the poor quality data. More often than not it happens to be a culture and awareness issue and no conscious effort is being made to capture the critical customer data points. Training, Incentive programs and communication can help set this right. Customer data management will lead to enhanced customer experience leading to higher retention of customer and successful marketing campaigns.
- Drive ROI on information assets through analytics A CDO can help an organisation derive value from the existing data sets by implementing a culture of analytics across the organisation. My earlier point on ‘Making the data Move’ would help an organisation have a better understanding of the data. This can lead to accurate implementation of analytics leading to revenue generation maximization,shorter time to market and improved relationships with customers, suppliers and partners.
The value of having someone coordinate all the data projects within an organisation in a structured manner is of immense value. Organisations which decide not to have a fulltime Data Management role have to clearly evaluate the various costs and risks attached of not having one. They need to evaluate the reputational and monetary costs an organisation can incur due to lack of a dedicated data management role.
Regulators and customers would get increasingly conscious about issues concerning the management of their data and organisations who truly believe that Data is an Asset would have people in full time roles to proactively manage their stakeholders .