Data is not meant to sit idle in databases, silos or even a department in a large organisation. Unlike oil, data is a renewable resource that can generate more value as it is used over and over and by more people. Holding back information purposefully or by mistake may limit the opportunities for retailers and brands and their partners. The need to gain capabilities to share and provide access to data is acute. Retailers and brands undergoing digital transformation that are aspiring to digital production and consumption ecosystems can benefit from the network effect of sharing data.

Most High-Value Companies are Driven by Data

According to a study on Measuring the Effectiveness of Data from the University of Texas, Austin, “If the median Fortune 1000 business…increased the usability of its data by just 10%, it would translate to an increase in $2.01 billion in total revenue every year.” 

Across most industries, the highest-value companies have become more digital and built capabilities to not only to capture data but also enrich and share it across their teams to analyse the data to make better decisions in their organisation. Strong data governance for master data and automation of sharing of this information blended with various types of transactional data can unlock operational efficiencies across the organisation.

Furthermore, companies are winning the loyalty of customers by utilising superior data to enable hyper personalisation and advanced analytics to predict smart bets on marketing tactics to capture new customers and drive successful promotions. 

Effectively sharing data with partners also can drive data value because they gain intelligence about your business and deliver greater results in return. From a production partner perspective, brands may need to share authoritative high-quality data on product dimensions, weights and packaging to a packer making special promotional or seasonal packs. From a marketing partner perspective, retailers may want to share the latest marketing messages with their ad agency to ensure there is consistent messaging on a new private brand launch. 

With so much coordination and different ways of sharing information, new data can be missed, or information can go unshared.

Challenges of Traditional Ways of Sharing

  • Data is not always available. Different time zones and operational schedules may mean partners and international teams may not have access to the data when they need it. 
  • Data is not current. Infrequent updates and lack of access to the source data creates a risk of using the current information that is most relevant to current market conditions.
  • Precise data access is limited. Traditional data sharing services share larger segments of data which does not allow for more precise governance of specific slices of data and therefore many companies elect to not share anything. 

Sharing is resource intensive. While the company has approved the sharing of more data within the enterprise and with partners, the data team is taxed with managing and delivering data with old tools and/or complex methods.

Find New Ways to Extend your Data Reach 

In this age of data transparency and higher analytic expectations, employees want access to more data in order to be effective in their role. In the context of inflation and varying demand, business partners are requesting access to real-time, high-quality data to deliver on operational and marketing goals. Third, consumers are increasingly asking for transparency and more data when and where they want it to learn more about brands and the healthy and sustainability attributes before making a purchase. Last, establishing data strategies for push-and-pull data sharing helps the data management teams and IT be more productive. 

With all of those stakeholders’ needs in mind, what are potential next steps?

  1. Gain perspective of your key internal stakeholders to understand their data challenges as discussed above and identify new data that would be helpful to drive more value.
  2. Adopt the consumer’s perspective in data consumption. Determine if your organisation needs to expose more brand product data to allow for richer data sharing via pull technologies enabled by QR codes.
  3. Evaluate the agility of your ability to share data with downstream systems and partners and scale as data volume grows.
  4. Assess your master data and the overall data governance approach to determine the status of various types of data and what actions can be taken to share more information without compromising security or privacy.
  5. Create a clear business case for data sharing initiatives with success metrics.
  6. Evaluate technologies that allow for authorised data to be pulled by partners, applications and consumers to reduce the number of requests and effort from data management teams
  7. Execute plan. With increased ability to share data, it can unlock the further development of data products to potentially commercialise and monetise