Improved Data Accessibility Adds Revenue
October 26, 2010
A study conducted by Sybase, an SAP company, in conjunction with the University of Texas and the Indian School of Business revealed that relatively small adjustments and investments made to improve data accessibility and use can promote revenue, growth, and innovation. The three-part study, titled “Measuring the Business Impacts of Effective Data,” reviewed large global corporations and surveyed their positions and plans for data management systems.
A few interesting statistics from the second part of the study:
- When data accessibility and intelligence are increased by 10%, revenue generated from new customers grew by 0.7%. When that percentage is applied to the median organization in the study sample, it resulted in additional revenue of $14.7 million.
- When applied to new products and services, the same 10% increase in data accessibility and intelligence resulted in a 0.81% increase in revenue. When that percentage is applied to the median organization in the study sample, an additional $17 million in revenue resulted for the year.
Anitesh Barua, lead researcher with the University of Texas, says the linkage between improved attention to data quality and usage of data should spark a dollars-and-cents interest with top-level managers and executives, including IT officers and CIOs. Nobody pretends it is easy. But, Barua says, “We’re saying at the end of the day, it’s still a lot of data and we’re drowning in transaction-level data. But, if you can make that meaningful – not just accurate and timely – you can reap a lot of benefits.”
It appears that this linkage is still unexplored territory for many companies. The study shows that only 3.7% of large companies reported that investing in data accessibility and intelligence was part of their development of revenue streams and method of acquiring new customers.
These findings were the second release in a three-part installment quantifying the relationship between effective data and a company’s performance. The first installment, released in July, reviewed the connections between incremental investments in data and the key financial indicators of an enterprise’s health and profitability. Later this fall, researchers will release the final portion of findings on the operational impacts of effective data with a focus on improving the accuracy of planning and forecasting.
The study’s findings can be viewed as outside validation of a long-held belief in the information governance profession: quick and easy availability of pertinent records and information contributes to organizational success. In this case, that contribution can be made in a very “bottom-line, dollars-and-cents” way. Records and information management (RIM) professionals can use their knowledge of the organization’s RIM and IT infrastructure, as well as its legal and compliance requirements, to analyze which information should be the primary focus of efforts at improving quality and availability.
ARMA International offers a wealth of information to those who wish to begin analyzing their information-handling structures and determining where to focus their improvement efforts. The Generally Accepted Recordkeeping Principles® provide a strong information governance framework within which organizations can begin to make judgments about the strength or weakness of their programs and to determine which areas are most in need of improvement and will provide the biggest returns if information use and quality is maximized.
Diane Carlisle, CRM