The power of data is undeniable. It has moved beyond being a competitive differentiator and into a business necessity. This is data value. Less certain however is the strategies needed to unlock data’s true potential; a myriad of factors combine to transform data in insights, insights into intelligence and intelligence into outcomes. How much data? Which data sets? Who controls the data? These questions and more are now common language from the Board down, as organizations race to be able to control their flow of information, activate innovation through what they learn and dominate the market.
Debating the above and more in the roundtable Data and its Dominance, Mehul Kapadia, Global Head of Marketing, MNC & Corporate, Vodafone Business; Roberto Maranca, Data Excellence VP, Schneider Electric; and Charlotte Baldwin, CDTO, Freshfields BruckhausDeringer, share their insights, as Peter Stojanovic moderates.
“The time for data for data’s sake is no longer viable for leaders,” Roberto announced. “The only thing we are looking for is data value. Do my actions create value and can we accurately connect the data we have to the value we’re creating?”
As Schneider Electric’s Data Excellence VP, Roberto has been in the data driving seat for both his company and sector, flying the flag for smart data strategies combined always with human intelligence.
Most important though when using and investing in your data streams is being able to tie it to the end results. That way, Roberto advised, you understand what you have, what you need next for your next innovation and you’re continually reinforcing the idea of how important data is for the business.
“My role is ensuring there is causality,” Roberto continued. “Data over time accumulates and can become stale, so you need fresh data constantly and only just enough to move quickly. We need to break the paradox of the need for fulsome, perfect data.”
Over at Freshfields BruckhausDeringer, Charlotte has been a passionate advocate for data value.
“When we solve a problem for a client I automatically switch to query how we can bring that value to our other clients,” said Charlotte. “For example, consider a legal process like arbitration or cross-border M&A; it’s powerful to build up a consisten data set to identify opportunities in the process earlier on the client lifecycle. I
“Imagine if you’re looking at mass claims and hundreds of thousands of claims, and you spend more time than you should identifying patterns. We are combining legal expertise and historical data and that’s exciting.
Alongside these technology leaders, a globally-orientated B2B chief marketing officer sat, Mehul Kapdia.
Data is also a unifying force for the business; technology, digital, marketing, HR, finance and operations teams are now bound—if they weren’t before—to the same outcomes of data insights: the data value it brings to the business. Data sources may differ, interpretation methods may contrast, but the balance of these is what defines, and will continue to define, a future-ready business. Having a roundtable debate with these two types of leaders influenced a fascinating dynamic to the conversation.
“When I look at it from a customer lens, switching to an outcome-led focus, there are three areas where I believe outcomes are driven best [with data],” said Mehul.
“One, finding and keeping customers. That has to be one of the most important areas in which data can help. Two, making operations efficient, so using data and leveraging technology to take the friction out of processes for a more seamless experience between different functions. And three, unlocking employee performance. A data strategy that unlocks the performance of teams will bring meaning and data value to the business.”
This roundtable on data value was sponsored by Vodafone.