Making Data More Accessible for Business Users

A lot of people recoil when they hear the word “data.” It’s a term that for a long time has been owned exclusively by an elite group of people with a mastery in statistics, data science, and other fields.

Thankfully, this is no longer the case. Computers are no longer the size of entire rooms but can fit into our pockets. Interfaces don’t have to be clunky. They can be made understandable for non-technical audiences.

There’s an obvious benefit to making data more accessible to everyone within a business, however. It allows for insight to come from anywhere, at any time. Here’s how companies should approach making their data easier to approach for all users.

Self-Service Analytics

There’s a term for the kind of dashboard that can be navigated by anyone within an enterprise:  self-service analytics. This has been one of the most important technological and cultural shifts to ever happen in regard to enterprise data. Why? Because it makes data finding more accessible. With self-service analytics dashboards as offered by ThoughtSpot and other platform, users can conduct their own research without having to consult a team data scientist, who are often bogged down with other projects.

By allowing business users to answer their own ad hoc questions, self-service analytics saves time for everyone involved. Users can get results faster, without having to go back and forth with analysts. As you might expect, this provides data analysts and data scientists more time to focus on more complex projects.

Data Visualization

There’s a reason why we translate data sets into graphs, pie charts, and other visual representations. For one, a large percentage of people are visual learners and prefer to read a data visualization that provides an at-a-glance break down of the numbers. Ensuring your data dashboards are equipped with the best data visualization tools will make them easier to use for a broad audience. Whether you’re using heat mapping tools to show clusters of data density or pie charts and other figures, data visualization is key.

Search-Based Analytics

Just about everyone knows how to look something via a search engine. Thanks to advances in artificial intelligence, these results have become extremely fast and accurate. Imagine if this same power were available to people conducting BI data analytics. Well, that’s the power of search-based analytics.

Search-based analytics allow for business people to instantly get synthesized visualizations and other results from a single inquiry almost instantly. This, data is more accessible to users across the board.

Don’t Have Data Silos

It’s natural for executives to want to keep their data as secure as possible. After all, data is power. But it’s also possible to go too in restricting this information, even from internal teams.

Data silos are the term given to data that’s kept separate, often behind walls inaccessible to vast groups of people. While this might be necessary for some information, breaking down data silos is key to getting the most out of that data. With too regimented of a structure, companies will lose out on important insights that could be used by different departments and teams within your organization.

Embedded Analytics

Once you’ve found something useful, you’ll probably want to share it with others and replicate your success in other sectors. Embedded analytics accomplishes exactly that. This tool allows for users to easily embed graphs and other visualizations across dashboards and other places. It’s now easier than ever to get everyone on board with data.

The companies that are able to the best job of introducing data across their whole enterprise will ultimately find the most success. The best way to do this is to make data more accessible to all people within the organization. These tools will facilitate this transition.

Awestruck by Star Trek as a kid, I have been relentless in his pursuit of covering the big technological innovations which will shape the future. A self-proclaimed gadget freak.