Why is Historic Data Important?
“Who among us does not say that data is the lifeblood of their company? The largest hoteling company [AirBnB] owns no hotel rooms. The largest taxi company [Uber] owns no taxi”
-Ash Ashutosh, CEO of Actifo
Just four years after uber was founded, its San Francisco revenues totaled more than 3 times of all the revenues of all taxicab companies in the city. Two years later the Yellow Cab Cooperative, which operated the largest fleet of taxis in SFO for decades, filed for bankruptcy. Among many innovations, Uber brought data to the taxi industry. Using historical data, Uber advises drivers to be in certain hotspots during certain times of the day to maximize their revenue. Uber matches the closest driver with the customer to minimize wait time. Uber changes its pricing as a function of demand.
While all this time traditional taxi companies could not answer “How long until the taxi arrives”
Management by Opinion: The illusion of Knowledge
At Zendesk two teams aimed to answer the question that should they use a marketing campaign to inform those customers who had shown interest in the new analytic feature or drive a campaign for getting more users.
The sales team wanted the first campaign while marketing team thought otherwise was the effort worthwhile and go for new users instead. Katherine a lead in marketing team sat quietly for few minutes, digging through the companies data on her laptop. “There are 27 customers who showed interest in new analytic feature” – She said, the meeting room fell silent, 27 customers where 0.03% of the total customer then the company had. The answer was clear.
“Without data you’re just another person with an opinion”
“the future is already here – it’s just not evenly distributed. the economist, December 4, 2003”
One of the truly great uses for any business data set is the ability to generate predictive analytics, which enables businesses to identify potential events and opportunities, and either avoid or capitalize on them, as the case may be.
HP uses flight score to rank each employee based on various data points they collect to identify how likely is the employee to switch job and let their managers know to take preventive actions. HP identified that the company gained significant profits by simply preventing people from leaving the company and reducing hiring & retaining losses
Data Silos – A wealth waiting to be unearthed
Most businesses have a multitude of different systems generating data every day, like Salesforce, Quickbooks, or even applications that they have developed in-house. These applications are tremendously useful to the departments that use them, and those departments use the data they produce as the foundation for decision-making and goal-setting activities.
Rarely, though, do those systems talk to each other. Accounting doesn’t talk to CRM, the point-of-sale system talks to inventory control, but not to ordering, and membership data doesn’t talk to anyone. Individual information systems handle their own data, rather than drawing from a common data source. This is what is known as a data silo.
Half the money I spend on advertising is wasted; the trouble is I don’t know which half.”
– John Wanamaker (1838-1922)
Using integrated BI now you can now know, that web campaign you did, how much traffic it generated but that resulted in how much of actual store visits and sales and what that profit was.
How do you ask?
When you start working with truly integrated data, pulling information from across your entire organization and feeding it into a BI tool that lets you see the big picture or narrow your scope to information specific to individual business processes, everyone wins, from the C-suite down to the sales force on the floor.
And it’s easier than you think. Call us or email on