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The SME's secret missile to launch a global business: Data discovery

Terry Smagh, Managing Director and Vice President, Qlik Asia | Dec. 2, 2015
Creating actionable intelligence at the click of a mouse and sharing insights in a user-friendly format is a massive advantage for a small business which may not have the manpower nor resources of a large business.

Doing this gives the business more agility so that, whether employees are working remotely or from a serviced-office, data will be accessible to them at any time — thus, eliminating the need for SMEs to hire more office space than is required to effectively run the business.

The business of analytics and intelligent data
When it finally boils down to the actual analytics, most SMEs defer to the status quo of viewing data — which is to look at results returned based on direct queries. For example, a Sales Director wishing to understand ice cream sales during May to July would only see data for that outlined period. Whilst proving to be valuable data to the Sales Director, precious insights would be left undiscovered as no 'peripheral' data is considered alongside these direct results.

Peripheral data is critical to unlocking the power of data discovery, especially under the scrutiny of a collective set of minds. For example, the same Sales Director examining sales data with his regional counterparts may find a correlation between ice cream sales and weather patterns simply because data on weather was analysed alongside ice cream sales data.

As a team, they could then discover a number of insights that would help drive their marketing and customer outreach strategy. For example, if ice-cream sales decline on an exceptionally hot day, they might, hypothetically, come to the conclusion that people are preferring to stay in the cool at home, rather than braving the heat. That counters the perception that the hotter the weather, the more ice-cream sells. And that's an understanding one SME might have that their competitors don't.

Conclusion
Data discovery and the right management of information can bring enormous value to SMEs that are looking for an efficient way to grow their organisation.

Whilst it is challenging to place a price on competitive advantage, its ability to propel small businesses to a global contender is indeed a powerful tool. In a market that is highly competitive such as Singapore, all businesses, whether an MNC or an SME, must equip themselves with the best assets at their disposal.

Harnessing the power of data, creating actionable intelligence at the click of a mouse and sharing those insights in a user-friendly format is a massive advantage for a small business which may not have the volume of manpower and resource that a larger business would have the benefit of.

Hence, business owners and management teams must be open to a new way of reviewing the volumes of data available to them in order to make intelligent decisions that bring the strongest value to their customers.

 

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