Scramble Mode – navigating the data storm with real-time accuracy

Real-time data analytics is the only viable option to ensure a holistic and current view of the cost vs value landscape. Especially in these stormy times. Ronnie Wilson, Group Executive Vice President at Serviceware explains.

Recent months have forced UK businesses to navigate extreme turbulence. Disruption to working norms has accelerated digital adoption, which has ignited transitions to the cloud amid the rise of virtual working. Legacy systems have been exposed for their shortcomings while new necessary alternatives put additional strain on already damaged investment budgets. In the early months of 2020, in particular, businesses were forced into scramble mode.

Up to this stage, strong winds and volatile conditions have been experienced in the form of a still unresolved Brexit conundrum, the global onset of COVID-19, and the resultant ushering in of another economic recession.

Yet, even as organisations prepare for recovery and smoother climes, another storm still awaits many: a storm of unreliable data.

However, this upcoming data blizzard isn’t necessarily a separate event. Rather, it’s a part of the challenge that all companies will work through and resolve in order to mitigate the effects of current market challenges.

Making accurate decisions through turbulence

The c-suite can’t just weather the storm and batten down the hatches. In the current climate, they must be seen as ‘innovative anticipators’: as proactive, forward-thinking decision-makers, setting their organisations up for concerted investment and development despite continuing turbulence.

In the short-term, this is built around cost-cutting exercises and quick wins to relieve some of the strain. However, in the longer term, in order to completely reprioritize and re-strategize business evolution for the new environment, accuracy and timeliness of data is paramount. Without the accuracy of real time data, accuracy of any new strategy off the back of that data, and accuracy of each decision being made when it is put into operation, will always be sub- standard, at best, and terminal at worst.

While a host of business data analytics tools are available to facilitate this area of digital transformation, the sheer volume of cost and usage data in need of analysis presents a problem. How can the c-suite attain one transparent view of expenditure vs value, when there is so much inaccurate and unconnected data informing those crucial decisions?

Damaging visibility

It’s a conundrum that’s coercing many into taking ill-thought leaps of faith, relying on data that’s often outdated on arrival. You don’t have to look far to find – often quite terrifying – examples, either. Something as simple as an out-of-date spreadsheet seems like a rudimentary error, but it’s actually very common, and often in high profile settings. The recent COVID-19 Test and Trace Excel scandal in the UK has highlighted just how simple it is for large organisations to fall foul of digital transformation in action. More generally, errors in this area are thought to be generating billions of pounds of risk into companies’ operations.

In truth, the only way to ensure a smooth transition through the data storm is to know where you are at all times. Capturing real-time data allows businesses to analyse with complete accuracy and to make decisions with all current and relevant information to hand. This is pivotal as, ultimately, the value of data isn’t the data itself, but the decisions that data informs.

In order to make a safe landing at the other side of this year, businesses need to shake off the impact of ‘duff data’ – those incomplete, error strewn and outdated datasets that continue to damage visibility at such a critical phase of their journeys.

A safe landing

Poor data management doesn’t just cost money in the short-term. It costs businesses time, effort, and resources, which all contribute to those tight expenditure limitations being faced.

Real-time data analytics is really the only viable option to ensure a holistic and current view of that cost vs value landscape. It calls for an integrated, high-performance and, above all, flexible financial management solution that generates reliable information from all parts of the business, on which decisions – cost, process, operations, business direction and everything else – can be based.

Financial management tools that facilitate transparent and real-time data analytics don’t just eliminate risks of duff data. They are the steering wheel for every split-second duck and dive you need to make in order to navigate this ongoing storm and make a safe landing.

Find out more about how financial management tools, and a more proactive approach to digital investment, can help your business through the remainder of 2020. Learn all about the benefits of proper ITFM and get a free demonstration tailored to your business demands by following the link below.

Find out more about ITFM and get a free demo!

Ronnie Wilson

Written by Ronnie Wilson

Serviceware’s Group Executive Vice President, Ronnie Wilson, has over 30 years of international experience in the IT sector, including 11 years as CEO at a FTSE 100 company, taking it through the 2008 financial crisis to a sale in 2009. Now, during these difficult and uncertain times, he has written a series of blog posts that draw on his wealth of experience particularly through challenging economic environments and crises. He talks about relevant situations faced in senior leadership roles and explains challenging C-suite scenarios and how they can be managed during an economic recovery.

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