Have you ever seen one of those photographic mosaics? It’s a bunch of tiny photographs that are put together to form one large image. If you get up really close, you can see all the individual pictures in there, each different, and seemingly unrelated to the ones around them. As you start to back away, it just seems like a jumbled mess of shapes and colors. But when you finally back up far enough to get a complete view of that collection of images, it becomes clear that they all fit together perfectly to create one beautiful picture. This is how I like to think about data analytics. All of that information can seem overwhelming when jumbled up in one big digital cluster, but with the right tools to organize and analyze it, it can paint important pictures for your business.
For Salesforce users, data may be the biggest asset that you aren’t taking full advantage of. Whether you have Sales Cloud, Service Cloud, Marketing Cloud (or all 3), powerful customer (and employee) data is being captured all the time; it’s just a matter of unlocking it and retrieving the actionable insights it has to offer.
For their 2015 State of Analytics Report, Salesforce surveyed over 2,000 business leaders about their use of analytics. Those findings helped them outline these 5 Steps to Becoming a Business Analytics Visionary:
- Use analytics to drive smarter business strategies. Ninety percent of the top-performing business leaders that Salesforce surveyed said analytics was very important — or absolutely critical — to driving their overall business strategy and improving operational outcomes. Let your data speak to you (even if you don’t always like what it has to say). If you’re seeing consistent analytical trends, figure out what those trends are telling you, and consider how they may affect your current strategies.
- Find powerful new use cases for your data. If you don’t think analytics are critical to your business, trust me, your competitors do. Salesforce found that top performing companies are 3 times more likely to be heavy analytics users than their underperforming peers. Take a good look at your business and find some new ways that you could potentially be gathering and harnessing your data.
- Create a culture of analysis. I’m going out right now to have this quote from Salesforce printed on a t-shirt: “Business analytics should be in the hands of the many, not the few.” Analytics shouldn’t be the job of just one person or some elite data task force in your organization. In their survey, Salesforce found that top performing companies are more than twice as likely as underperformers to give analytics tools to at least half of their employees.
- Invest in the tools and the people. Your analytics investment shouldn’t just be about throwing money at technology. It also needs to include training and support for your employees so they can use your data to its full potential. Seventy-five percent of top performing companies are planning to increase their analytics spend over the next 2 years — and they’re allocating almost twice as much of their budget to training.
- Embrace the latest analytics technology. Today’s top performers are more actively leveraging emerging analytics technology than underperformers. If you want to stay ahead of the curve — and have a leg up on your competitors — you need to be using the latest and greatest in analytics tools.
Do data better with Salesforce Wave
If you feel like maybe you aren’t getting the best value out your Salesforce data, Wave Analytics can take you to a whole new level of business intelligence power. Analytics Cloud helps organizations quickly and easily slice and dice millions of rows of Sales Cloud and Service Cloud data in one customizable, mobile-ready application — leading to faster and better-informed business decisions.