Spend Less Time Gathering Data, More Time on Analytics: The Role of the Citizen Analyst
Data-driven decision making is the key to competitive differentiation. It’s the thing that every organization wants to achieve, but many struggle to see come to fruition.
BI Tools are Great, But There’s a Problem
At first, it’s hard to understand the struggle. Business intelligence and visualization tools have advanced by leaps and bounds over the last several years. They provide great dashboards and visualizations for business analysts to communicate insights, so on the surface there doesn’t seem to be a reason not to have accurate, data-driven decisions.
But while there is agility at the BI layer and it’s become easier to analyze the data and answer business questions, theses insights are only as good as the data they are based on.
There’s a Data Challenge for the Citizen Analyst
Again we see the data challenge. It’s the business analysts that understand the business problem, question or challenge they need data to help answer. But these analysts, or citizen analysts, are dependent on IT and often data stewards to source and connect the right data.
To add even more frustration, business analysts are responsible for finding the best insights on a predictable basis. If they don’t know when they will get their data, or even if it’s right data, how they can provide consistency with their insights?
It’s a Similar Challenge with a Similar Answer
Does this story sound familiar? It should. It’s a similar problem to that of the data steward. In some cases, the business analyst might even be the data steward. In both instances, the business analyst needs access to the data.
If they had consistent, direct access to existing data models created by data stewards, or the ability to shop for the data themselves, then they could provision the data faster for their BI tools and get to work on the dashboards and visualizations required to capture insights and make better decisions.
We all know how easy it is to shop on Amazon. What if we could provide that same shopping experience to the business analyst? What if they could quickly see the data, pick the datasets they need, make the connections and quickly create the data models required for business analysis?
This is all about unifying data across silos and making it available to the people who know it best and understand how it will be used. This is how data supply chain is streamlined. But this is just one role in the data unification story. Download the ebook Unify Data Across Silos to learn about the others.