Once regarded as mostly theoretical, the benefits of big data in the business world are real and tangible. This is especially true with the advent of big data tools and cloud Spark platforms that do the heavy lifting and allow companies to focus on the business at hand. As a result, more and more companies are leveraging customer data and insights to drive data-driven decisions and gain a competitive advantage.
As the big data playing field becomes more crowded, organizations are gaining an extra competitive edge by harnessing internally generated data. This type of data can be analyzed to gain insights to inform better business practices, and more importantly, to build a strong work culture that leads to more satisfied, loyal, and productive employees.
If your organization is in search of new and better ways to outperform its competitors — and what company isn’t — here’s a look at how big data can help to build a strong work culture that leads to a healthier bottom-line.
A recent article on CIO.com discusses the importance of maintaining corporate culture within an organization. In the article, Diana McKenzie, the newly appointed CIO of Workday, discusses the importance of improving the business architecture within the company to make sure that individuals are aware of, “what data we have, where it is, how they get to it, and what they can and can’t see.” Getting data out of silos and allowing access across the organization will, “… ensure that business leaders have the right information at their fingertips to make better decisions”, says McKenzie.
Granting greater data access to those within the organization makes big data analytics a part of the company’s culture. This can create greater unity of purpose within the workforce and lead to significant competitive advantage.
When the value of data is more deeply ingrained into the corporate DNA, leaders can guide and direct employees based on logic, effectively removing the emotional component. Employees want to trust their leaders and feel that they are a part of a corporate vision that they can believe in and support. And when they are presented with detailed information that supports making changes within the company that directly affect them — such as revising a project — they will be more likely to support those directives when they are based on clear, factual logic instead of what otherwise might appear to be an opinion based on a “gut feeling”.
Identifying High and Low Employee Achievers
Rasheed Wallace, the popular NBA basketball star once said in reference to a questionable call made by a referee, “Ball don’t lie.” And the same can be said of data. It is what it is and the numbers and insights revealed by big data analytics are irrefutable. Internal information that an organization gathers on what applications are being used by specific employees, and from which devices, can give them a clear picture of individual work habits, effective practices, speed and reliability, etc. Managers can use this information to make sure that employees are equipped with the best technology to be productive. By the same token, this information will also help leaders weed out those employees that are unproductive. This helps create a work culture of fairness wherein all employees realize that rewards and recognition can come to them if the numbers show that they are performing well — not just the favored few.
Tapping Deeper into the Talent Pool
Democratizing data within an organization allows organizations to access more talented employees within their workforce than they couldn’t otherwise. It’s fairly well known that some C-Level execs can be stubborn and set in their ways when it comes to making changes within the organization. But greater access to big data gives lower-level employees a voice. And if the data tells a lower-level employee that the company needs to make changes in accordance with changing trends that are substantiated by hard numbers, upper level management is more likely to put ego aside and sit up and listen. And when employees realize that they have a real voice in the organization, and that their unique skills and creativity can be put into play — if they have the numbers to back them up — that organization will enjoy a work culture that fosters employee unity and loyalty.
Enhanced Customer Experience
All of the above ways that big data can help build a strong work culture add up to one main benefit, an enhanced customer experience. By analyzing data from both external and internal sources your organization can get a clearer picture of what your customers want and make the necessary changes within to make sure that your employees deliver the best customer experience possible.
Contributed by: Linda Gimmeson, a tech writer with a focus in big data, machine learning, & IoT. Linda discusses big data, emerging technologies, and how companies can get real value out of their data.
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