The movie Moneyball, based on the book of the same name, tells the story of the Oakland Athletics baseball team. During the year 2001, they won close to 2/3 of their games and almost defeated the Yankees during the playoffs.
It mentions how the general manager Billy Beane and his assistant Peter Brand succeeded in transforming their struggling team into a winning one while keeping a “low” payroll of US$41 million, US$84 million less than the Yankees. How did they do it? By compiling and analysing data!
Fact often ignored: implementing data integration for a specific purpose gives spectacular results.
How can we now apply this to your enterprise?
Think of the sales data and reports you already use. Are they entirely adapted and complete?
You are flooded with all kinds of data (market data, information from different systems: management, employees, customers, suppliers, Internet, etc.). Do you really make full use of all the information that could improve your situation?
When well organized, all this data becomes useful and will help you make informed decisions that will impact your strategies and the work in the field.
But how to structure them without spending too much time on it?
Many manufacturers, often category captains, are provided with reports that allow them to analyse in detail and on a daily basis the sales made at the different points of sale.
Each week, files from the retailers are validated, structured and centralized in the manufacturer’s database without any human intervention.
That is what we call data integration. It allows to:
- reduce greatly the time spent cleaning and sorting the data;
- combine data from different sources;
- simplify data analysis by organizing the information.
Regarding the sales data, for example, you provide your team with strong arguments that are based on FACTS. By doing so, you contribute to improve the sales and to position your company as a strategic partner for your customers.
Where do I start? What should I integrate first?
Specialists in sales steering and data integration can help you to:
- identify opportunities for improvement and what data should be integrated.
- put in place an automated data integration by using a software especially designed to accomplish this task in your enterprise.
- generate reports or dashboards that would give you access to meaningful information at all times.
Just like Billy Beane, by integrating and using the data available you will be able to improve your “batting average”.