The process of starting a project can be daunting. There are many steps that all require a lot of communication and cohesion throughout your team, but an experienced employee will have no problem with these tasks. The area that may lead even an experienced team astray is the mental approach to the project. Starting off trivializing any project can ultimately lead to failure in that it will not accomplish all that it has the potential to accomplish. Our consultants see this mentality a lot in analytics projects in particular.
The problem is that data isn’t just data anymore. Data is the pulse of your business, and the way you take the pulse and understand what it means is getting more and more complex. A strong focus on analyzing our data is what drives us to understand the benefits and drawbacks of massive amounts of data. There is a ton of effort necessary to parse that data into useful information, and an infinite number of tools and methods to help with this effort. It can be an overwhelming task to figure out what works for your specific use cases.
A good project team is constantly evaluating its goals and completed work. The question to ask yourself after figuring out how to consume your data is: Are we focusing too much on just the data? You will be able to build reports, analytics, and dashboards, but are you recognizing the comprehensive end-to-end solution? Are you taking into account the available infrastructure options? Are you designing in a manner that will allow others to utilize the same data sets? Are you giving any thought to how you will access these visualizations across multiple browsers, operating systems, and mobile devices?
All of these pieces work in concert; the data, the analysis, and enterprise-wide access. If you can see how the whole system interacts, then you are in a better position to use your data in more beneficial ways and for scale. Your data must be managed as an asset from the point of acquisition & creation to consumption & distribution. There are cloud, hosted, and on-premise solutions that may meet the functional, architectural, and accessibility requirements. It is also critical to understand how the data will be stored. The information will need to be seamlessly integrated into the broader enterprise architecture to enable re-use by other groups. Then, by having a holistic view in place you add value to the data analysis across the whole organization.
This enterprise-wide understanding and approach to managing your data also helps avoid duplication of efforts and storing multiple copies of data that can cause operational or analytical challenges. In this digital age of multiple devices, we must also ensure that data delivery is consistent, secure, and intuitive to users.
Anexinet perspective & expertise – spanning the technology ecosystem.
During the planning process, it is also important to consider how to maintain, support, operationalize, and govern this solution because these processes that surround the solution are equally important. Understanding the big-picture technology landscape of your analytics solution will play a key factor in the success of the solution selected, the design of the appropriate architecture, and in the adoption within the user community.
For more thoughts on how you and your team can apply a strategic approach and perspective to your technology solution, let’s chat!!
Chris Young, Strategy Leader, [email protected]