As a business owner, you will have the knowledge that the fate of your business lies in real time data. How will you be able to increase your sales? What is going on with production today and for the rest of this week? How many people work for you? Who is working today? What are your net and gross profits for today? Who bought your products? Is that person a regular customer? What comments and concerns have your customers registered? What do you need to do to make a million dollars?
You need data to answer all of those questions and more.
So, is data your friend or your enemy?
It can definitely be seen to stand on both sides of that question. You need the data in order to run your business on a day to day basis and make it grow. What happens though when something happens to that data? Let’s take a closer look.
The Human Factor
There are no two ways about it. Humans make mistakes. For this reason, your data needs to constantly be backed up. If it is, then you might be able to restore it to its normal state when someone makes as error that causes it to be lost and or corrupted. It doesn’t matter how much we wish that we could be perfect, we aren’t and as such, we could quite easily miss an important step in any of the 9 million processes we perform on a daily basis and either enter the wrong data or delete data that we need.
Making sure that you are using efficient processes and that you have amazing quality assurance programs in place are the best thing you can do, but you should also always have a hard drive data recovery service on speed dial just in case.
In all actuality, securing your data and having a recovery plan in place is only one aspect of the data issues. If you want your business to be able to properly harness data’s power, you also need it to be accurate and you need to have integrity with how it is used. Once you have guaranteed these things, all that is left is to decide how you will use the data in order to get the best results. Remember that as important as data is, it does have a shelf life.
What Happens Without Data
In the past, data was something that was exclusively managed by the IT departments in an organization. If there were discrepancies, additions, changes, etc. that had to be addressed, these things were taken care of behind the curtain. Business units submitted the necessary requests and the IT department would then make the adjustments as needed. Now, business intelligence is becoming more of a user – driven entity and with the decision makers for the businesses wanting to have direct access to all types of data, information management has never been more critical.
Having end users as well as business analysts interacting and manipulating data in Excel in order to meet the needs of the business doesn’t work anymore… maybe it never worked, it was just the best option that we had at the time. Valid data could be gotten from reliable data sources, but once it got into the hands of individuals, the reliability and accuracy of it could no longer be guaranteed.
The bottom line here for businesses is that if you want to maintain accurate, valid, and reliable access to information, you need to address the challenges with regards to the management of data. Without access to the data that you need in order to make better, more informed decisions about the business, you can’t compete with other businesses on the broader landscape of the marketplace. With requirements for information expanding, businesses just can’t piece together their sources of data in a random way. They need to have data management organization that is strong in order to make sure that the data gets turned into actionable and valuable information. Without this key element that data poses, your organization will be left behind and will eventually cease to exist.
Because data is so important, it is absolutely critical that all of the necessary data for your business be backed up on a regular basis and that you have a data recovery service on call in case the unthinkable happens.