Estimated at £125bn in 2021 and growing twice as quick as the rest of the economy throughout the 2010s, the UK is the largest data market in Europe. Described as the new oil, the new gold, the new currency, data has become central to our lives. Moving past the metaphors, the value of data and the opportunities on offer to people, businesses and society, is undeniable.
Yet businesses report they are struggling to make the most of their data. The CBI’s 2021 Tech Tracker report found that businesses now have more data than they know what to do with, but DCMS research has highlighted that only 26% of companies are using data to generate business insights. So, why the disconnect?
Business leaders are facing challenges on multiple fronts, with no sign of things letting up any time soon. In this increasingly complex and uncertain environment, data and analytics are critical tools to help businesses survive. By capitalising on the data they have and using it effectively, businesses can better understand the issues they face in the present, predict the challenges that they may face in the future, preparing to navigate them with confidence.
This CBI campaign is a starting point for businesses on their journey to making the most of their data. Bringing together best practice guidance, case studies and additional resources, use this mini-guide and wider toolkit to take the first step. Discover and learn how other businesses are effectively collecting, analysing and utilising data to achieve their operational objectives, and how you can too.
What do we mean by ‘Making the Most of Your Data?’
Making the most your data can mean different things to different companies. It could mean:
- Building robust strategies for collecting and using data that are compliant, ethical and scalable.
- Learning how to turn data into insights that help your business achieve its commercial objectives including operational transformation and new product development
- Understanding national and international regulatory frameworks for managing data and the best practice for navigating these
- Understanding how businesses can safely and effectively share data for mutual benefit.
Why are businesses making the most of their data?
To stay ahead of the competition
Data can help you identify areas to enhance or optimise your business to stay ahead in increasingly competitive markets.
One of the UK’s largest universities, for example, recognised that they could use the data at their disposal to enhance the student experience and course quality in response to increased competition in the market thanks to the rise of organisations offering distanced learning.
In partnership with Infosys, the university used the data at its disposal to implement solutions such as AI-based essay writing support, automated processing to save over 14,000 hours of work annually, and the implementation of chatbots and digital assistants to improve user satisfaction by 60%.
To innovate faster
Your business can use data to reduce time spent on manual tasks, freeing up time to pursue new innovations and launch new products and services with confidence.
One of the world’s largest snack companies used its data to reduce the time it takes to research and develop new products. By leveraging their data in partnership with Infosys, this business was able to reduce its research and development time by 10% and its new product delivery times by 20% - 40%, all with the confidence that the market will enjoy and buy the products.
To achieve longer-term goals, for example, on decarbonisation and diversity & inclusion
Data is a critical tool for your business to monitor improvement and progress towards your long-term goals. Not only does data provide a historical record, but it can offer insights that can be used to improve strategies as they are being delivered.
A major oil and gas company, for example, is leveraging its asset data to improve run time, energy consumption, and operational efficiency by predicting maintenance and automating its ticketing system. Ultimately, this business chose to do so to reduce its carbon emissions and accelerate its long-term goals of becoming a more sustainable business.
By working with Infosys to build a modular and highly scalable platform connecting sites’ assets and installing sensors, this business is able to collect the data required to improve automation and real-time asset health monitoring capabilities to optimise performance and unlock a wider range of AI&A use case opportunities, thus accelerating their journey towards operational, and environmental efficiency.
To improve collaboration with partners and vendors
Businesses can use the data at their disposal to identify new opportunities for partnerships with other organisations to drive growth and returns for both parties.
A major software provider was able to support their partner in taking their data strategy to the next level, by making more of the data they had, augmenting their data sets and supporting them to pursue new strategies.
To boost customer acquisition
Understanding your customers is critical for most businesses. Data is a valuable tool for gathering insights on your customers, identifying new opportunities, and offering an experience that builds brand loyalty.
The goal for any retail company is not just to have customers, but to have active customers – customers who are repeatedly buying from your brands, who can be sold different types of products, and who are referring the products to others as well. Data enabled a sportswear manufacturer to provide customers with personalized products to enrich their experience and hence ensure they come back again.
Using the data available to them and a machine learning solution developed in partnership with Infosys, this sportswear manufacturer increased the number of active customers from 13m to 56m. The repeat buyer rate when up by 15% (from 8% to 23%), and the process of target customer identification was reduced from 25 weeks to 5 weeks.