Features, Insight, Opinion

The new formula for digital transformation

By Alan Jacobson, Chief Data & Analytics Officer, Alteryx

The recent acceleration of digital transformation across industries has compressed years’ worth of changes to the ways companies do business and enabled analytically mature companies to outperform their competition. Laggards in the data literacy race are leaving the more than 2.5 quintillion bytes of data (more than 1.7 megabytes per second per person on Earth) that are now being produced online every day untouched and under-utilised. In the next few years, the analytic divide between companies that can harness this data and those that cannot, will continue to widen.

To stay competitive, surfacing key insights daily has become mission critical. Companies that are committed to staying ahead of the curve are leveraging analytics automation to drive greater agility, greater adaptability, and greater returns. According to reports by Capgemini Research Institute, 50% of business decision-making is already data-driven, and companies that strategically harness data are 22% more profitable on average than their rivals.

With the vast amounts and exploding complexity of digital data, there is only one way to stay ahead: analytics and data science automation. Automating how you discover, analyse, and reach answers is enabling companies to get ahead of their competition. But what’s paramount is that everyone in the workforce should be able to do it, not just a handful of specialists. That’s where ease-of-use and self-service automation comes in. Thousands of organisations and citizen analysts in small companies to the Global 2000 rely on our analytics and data science automation every day to find groundbreaking answers to almost any business question.

As global advisory firm Gartner notes, a digital-first business’s success now depends on all employees being information workers who can “speak data,” making the ability to spot and surface key insights within your company vital. Incredibly, given the impending shift to an analytics-powered strategy that many companies now face, about 60% to 73% of all enterprise data still goes unused, according to analysts at market research firm Forrester. This presents a growing challenge in a world where supply chain and workplace variables can change on a dime—for example, in the wake of a global pandemic. The challenge is further exacerbated by the fact that worldwide data literacy rates continue to lag far behind the pace of industry change.

But there are analytics solutions that upskill information workers into data-literate knowledge workers. With the right insights, these knowledge workers, individually and collectively, can drive organisational transformation. The right, easy-to-use software platform can allow powerful analytics automation capabilities to be quickly deployed across the organisation to provide better access to information—and access to game-changing business insights—in literally minutes to days.

Companies need to be able to rapidly spot and predict emerging changes in the marketplace and operating environment, just as customers expect firms to use data to stay well attuned to their ever-changing wants and needs. Analytics automation solutions such as those provided by Alteryx not only give companies the tools they need to become more agile and adaptable by automating and optimising business outcomes—they also give every employee in your company the power to innovate and drive huge breakthroughs by democratising the business of data science at enterprise scale.

For top retailers, this can mean gaining the ability for an enterprise to know precisely when and where to facilitate store reopening’s, as well as which products to stock. For leading government agencies, it can mean reducing the time associated with processing millions of claims from months down to a matter of minutes. Global airlines use these powerful technology tools to optimise staffing and fuel levels, and manufacturers tap into them to automatically adapt to fast-changing shipping and inventory conditions. It’s becoming increasingly clear that not just data but actionable insights coupled with automation is power in the new economy—and your organisation’s survival will only become more dependent on access to data and the ability to draw on its key findings going forward.

Data is now the lifeblood of modern organisations, and analytics automation technology has become so accessible that anyone can ask challenging questions and get meaningful answers. From automating processes to utilising artificial intelligence and machine learning to solve pressing problems, enterprises now have all the tools they need to make smarter decisions with less time and effort. These days, the trickiest part of the equation isn’t teaching people how to use analytics automation technology to drive better results. With analytics solutions now at the fingertips of working professionals, the hardest part of digital transformation is simply teaching people how to ask better questions—and the easier it becomes to answer a question, the more people strive to answer the next one.

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