A data strategy is a plan for how an organisation will use data to drive growth and improve efficiency. It differs from a business strategy in that it focuses specifically on how data can be used to support and achieve the organisation’s business goals.
Business strategy vs data strategy
Business strategy and data strategy are closely related, but they are not the same thing. Business strategy is a plan for how an organisation will achieve its overall business goals, while data strategy is a plan for how data can be used to support and achieve those goals.
For example, a business strategy might include goals such as increasing sales, expanding into new markets, or improving efficiency.
A data strategy might include goals such as improving data quality, integrating data from multiple sources, or using data to inform decision-making to enable teams to track where increases in sales are coming from or to enable the team to focus and execute on the opportunities with the best ROI.
Who is responsible for data strategy?
In an organisation, data strategy is typically the responsibility of the chief data officer (CDO) or a data strategy team. The CDO is responsible for leading the development and implementation of the data strategy, and for ensuring that the organisation’s data assets are aligned with the business strategy.
The CDO may be the same as the CTO and occasionally the CISO due to the similar fields, but often it makes the most sense to utilise the specialist knowledge of virtual (or fractional) CDO. We help many clients in this capacity to great success.
Steps to develop a data strategy.
Here are the steps involved in developing a data strategy:
- Define your business goals: The first step in developing a data strategy is to define your business goals. This will help you determine how data can be used to support and achieve those goals.
- Assess your current data assets: Next, you’ll want to assess your current data assets, including data sources, data quality, and data infrastructure. This will help you understand what you have to work with and where there are opportunities for improvement.
- Identify data gaps and opportunities: Based on your business goals and assessment of your current data assets, you can identify any gaps or opportunities for improvement. This might include identifying new data sources, improving data quality, or building new data infrastructure.
- Develop a roadmap: With your data gaps and opportunities identified, you can develop a roadmap for addressing them. This might include a timeline for implementing new data sources, a plan for improving data quality, or a strategy for building new data infrastructure.
- Communicate the data strategy: It’s important to ensure that your data strategy is clearly communicated to all relevant stakeholders, including leadership, data professionals, and business users. This will help ensure that everyone is on the same page and working towards the same goals.
- Monitor and review: Your data strategy should be a living document that is reviewed and updated regularly. This will help ensure that it remains aligned with your business goals and responsive to changing needs and opportunities.
Here are a few examples of how a data strategy can be used to drive growth and improve efficiency in an organisation:
- Improving customer experience: A data strategy can be used to improve the customer experience by laying the foundation for a long-term project to integrate data from multiple sources, such as CRM systems, web analytics, and social media, to create a comprehensive view of customers and their needs.
- Identifying new product opportunities: A data strategy can help an organisation identify new product opportunities by ensuring the appropriate data is collected and made available to analysts and decision-makers.
- Optimising marketing efforts: A data strategy can be used to optimise marketing efforts by ensuring the appropriate data to target marketing efforts towards the most likely buyers is available and to set up the parameters for tracking the effectiveness of different marketing campaigns.
- Improving operational efficiency: A data strategy can help an organisation improve operational efficiency by analysing data on business processes and identifying areas for improvement over the long term and highlighting targeted areas for improvement or blindspots.
A data strategy is a critical component of a successful business. It allows organisations to use data to drive growth and improve efficiency and is essential for competing in today’s data-driven world. By following the steps outlined above, you can develop a data strategy that supports your business goals and helps your organisation make informed data-driven decisions.
So why do things piecemeal?
We’ll help you develop the right data strategy to underpin your organisation’s aspirations.