One of the most important assets in your business? Most of the owners and executives we talk to will come up with answers like real estate, patents, or even employees. A few forward-thinkers might name their brand or experience.
One answer that hardly ever comes up, however, is the data a company owns.
While data might not be the most valuable part of your business on paper, it can be worth a lot more than you might imagine. That’s because you can use data to sort customers into groups, market to a tightly-defined segment of buyers, spot industry trends, and a lot more.
In fact, many companies are sitting on goldmines they don’t even know exist. That’s because they aren’t paying any attention to data integration – the process of making information more accessible to users and decision-makers.
Here are a few ways you can avoid making the same mistake…
Data Integration Starts With Automated Capturing
It’s nearly impossible to get anything for your company’s data if you’re manually entering by hand. That’s not just because the costs will be high and duplication mistakes are going to occur, but also because there will always be a lag time between the moment when information is received and when it’s accessible.
Using specialized software, you can automate data collection through your website, incoming documents, and even printed mail. Given that computerized capturing systems are fast and inexpensive, why would you want to pay someone to type day after day… or worse yet, do it yourself?
Data Needs to Be Accessible in Real Time
It’s not exactly a secret that today’s business world moves at a faster-than-ever pace. In order to make good decisions, you have to have updated information. Old data isn’t just useless, it can actually cause you to make poor decisions that move your company backwards.
With smart software and automated data collection, though, you can maintain up-to-date records on customers, finances, inventory, personnel, and other parts of your company. Then, you can get real-time feedback on both what is and isn’t working.
Profitable Data Integration Requires Detailed Reporting
As we have noted in the past, data doesn’t have much value in and of itself. To profit from it, you have to parse it, understand it, and decipher trends. This brings us to another aspect of data integration, which revolves around detailed reporting.
When you have the right data systems in place, the metrics you need are available with the push of a button. Even better, reports can be customized for various date ranges, regions, customer types, etc. That’s everything you need to run your company in an easy-to-understand format. And, it’s insight you wouldn’t get from a spreadsheet or stack of papers on your desk.
Is It Time to Start Getting More from Data and Technology?
If you suspect your company could be doing more with technology than it is right now, take this chance to get the expert advice you need. The WebRevelation team is here to answer your questions and find cost-friendly solutions to your biggest challenges. Contact us today so we can set up a time to talk!