How well do you use the data which your business collates? Any organisation which accumulate data from their business activities may hold the key to insights which could ultimately impact their bottom line. From information held on sales demand to statistics which are related to the supply chain; it all has the ability to show us how we can improve by making more informed business decisions.
The extent to which our business intelligence can benefit from our data will come down to the proficiency of in-house business data strategies. A range of systems can be used to manage the business operations and the data strategy, including Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) software systems. ERP systems can give us the tools to harvest information and produce insights. But without the right attitude and objectives in place, there is no guarantee of success.
Data has no value if it is just sitting there. Reviewing, analysing and acting upon the information you have provides valuable insights to your business. The type of action which is set or taken is likely to depend on the department it is related too and the nature of the business.
In an industry such as manufacturing, inventory data can be used to optimise the supply chain or meet customer demands. For example, ERP users can use the stock data to know when to replenish products or components in a timely fashion. Similarly, customer data or sales orders can build a picture of buying habits. It could show how a purchase of a certain product may encourage customers to purchase another related product or whether product lines have seasonal trends etc. In turn, this kind of data can be used to create marketing campaigns such as scheduling email communication to be automatically sent after the first product is purchased.
Leave room for change
Your data strategy should be seen as a 'road map', rather than being set in stone. That's because it is only natural that our business requirements will change over time. When changes occur, it can leave gaps in the data management plan which we have created. This is why a flexible framework is required to account for future evolution in the type of data which we collate and our overarching business objectives.
Context is king
Raw data is useless unless it is put in context. That goes for anything from supply costs to customer retention rates - it needs to be allied with other data in order for it to be relevant. That means contextualising with market comparisons or historical comparisons to allow us to assess the significance of the particular data set. It is only by adding context to data that it becomes meaningful enough for informed business decision making.
Using an intelligent and integrated ERP software such as WinMan ERP will centralise your business data to take the hard work out of analysing and gaining insights. You might find that you can make some savings too, by consolidating the different systems from different departments - from CRM to product data management to warehouse management - under one integrated business system. Want to know more? Contact WinMan today.
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