Why descriptive analytics?
Using descriptive analytics well is one of the bedrocks of becoming a data-driven business, where a business uses data to improve the way it operates. It is also an essential component to helping your team become empowered by motivating them to ask questions of data, use tools to answer those questions, and enabling them to apply the results of their analyses to solve business problems more effectively.
By asking questions such as
- What has happened?
- What is happening?
- Why did it happen?
your business can begin to react to changes quickly and make better decisions over time. The outcomes of having solid descriptive analytics are usually a set of well-defined business problems, a knowledge of the causes and effects of changes inside and outside the business, and the ability to identify new business opportunities as they arise.
Enablers for using descriptive analytics
The tools and techniques you use to do this do not have to be complicated. You can start simple with business reporting and scorecards to quickly assess internal and external performance. Managers can use dashboards to collect insights from a wide range of sources, drill down through the data to answer specific questions, and consistently make good decisions.
As your business evolves, a data warehousing solution can be deployed to clean and consolidate data from all areas of the business into a structured format for fast retrieval and secure storage. The analytics layer sitting on top of a data warehouse can perform large-scale aggregations and data mining on your data to identify patterns and trends. Identify the causes and effects of these patterns with cause and effect analyses, or run correlational analyses to find other interesting relationships.
Intuition is important. But it will only take you so far. By starting early, you can become more confident that the decisions you make are based on fact. Only then can you go further, testing your processes by making predictions when new data comes in, at which point you are delving into the realms of predictive analytics and beyond.
Start working smarter with a data process that scales, and apply this process to making marketing decisions, increasing sales and improving customer engagement.
To become more data-driven and deploy descriptive analytics solutions to your organisation, Engage Consolidata.