Cultural gaps impede NZ companies’ efforts to be data-driven

Kiwi firms attempting to gain competitive advantage through data initiatives are stymied by a disconnect between how CEOs see the current status and benefits of data initiatives and how lower-level managers see them.

Organisations across New Zealand attempting to gain competitive advantage through data initiatives are stymied by a disconnect between how CEOs see the current status and benefits of data initiatives and how lower-level managers see them.

That's according to a global study sponsored by Teradata, which shows that data-driven companies are more likely to outperform their competitors when it comes to profitability.

“The survey makes it clear that organisations succeed when the data-driven vision and leadership are shared, and the benefits of data initiatives are consistently tracked, promoted and, most importantly, linked to corporate goals and business results," says Andrew Blamey, VP A/NZ, Teradata.

CEOs have a rosy view of data initiatives

According to findings, executives other than the CEO, and especially lower-level managers, see the current status and benefits of data initiatives far differently than the CEO.

While 47 per cent of CEOs believe that all employees have access to the data they need, only 27 per cent of all respondents agree that they do.

Similarly, 43 per cent of CEOs think relevant data are captured and made available in real time, compared to 29 per cent of all respondents.

CEOs are also more likely to think that employees extract relevant insights from data: 38 per cent of them hold this belief, as compared to 24 per cent of all respondents and only 19 per cent of senior vice presidents, vice presidents and directors.

Converting data into insights is still a struggle

Blamey says that while many companies have invested significantly in gathering vast amounts of data, they still struggle to extract insights, put them to work for the business, and create truly data-driven organisations.

"When it comes to capturing and disseminating important business data, 57 per cent of respondents believe their company does a poor job," he adds.

"The issue is significantly more pronounced among underperforming, less innovative, and less technology-reliant companies.

"There is little disagreement that access to necessary data and ability to convert it into actionable insights are the greatest obstacles to data adoption and utilisation."

Data are unequally available even within data-driven and top-performing companies

"Data are not equally available even within the most data-driven and top-performing companies," says Blamey, adding that two-thirds of respondents agree that some departments have much better access to data than others.

This situation is particularly acute among companies with US$500 million in annual revenue or more, he adds.

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