As we’ve frequently discussed here at the APEX of Innovation, speed, agility, good quality data, and pervasive data access are essential if organizations hope to achieve and maintain a competitive advantage. As a result, data democratization has become increasingly prevalent as a means for enabling faster access to data, new data discovery and exploration, and more effective information sharing. 

Companies that avail of this data-first approach use analytics to respond to market changes, new customer expectations, and other variables, customizing dashboards and quickly creating new reports. 

There are myriad ways being data-first benefits the business, with the following as just a few examples: 

  • Data is not restricted to analysis alone, but also includes insights into which data sources are likely to deliver maximum value. For example, if an IT leader is asked to identify the highest impact projects, data-driven insights can assist in prioritization—leading to more efficient utilization of time and resources. 
  • With a data-first approach, organizations also have a holistic view into different verticals and regions. This data can be analyzed at an aggregated level or drilled into by a specific division or area of interest to help companies identify strengths and weaknesses and design their roadmap accordingly.
  • A data-first business also empowers employees to explore data for underlying patterns or trends, which can ultimately lead to new revenue-generating opportunities. For more on this approach, take a look at this previous APEX of Innovation post on insight monetization. 
  • Companies can also drill into customer and market data to determine how to better attract and onboard new customers, why customers should select their product, and how it can be improved to attract and retain more customers.

Businesses can only reap the above and other benefits of the data-first approach if they have the right foundational culture in place. Take a look at this blog for tips on addressing the cultural element, and if you’re interested in more about becoming data-first take a look at this KDNuggets article.