Transform Your Business Data Chaos into Strategic Success

Imagine you're running a popular online retail store, "Gizmo Gadgets," that has grown exponentially over the past year. Initially, you could comfortably manage sales records, customer service interactions, and website traffic data. However, that growth encouraged you to expand your offerings, which brought in more customers – and as your data sources began to overflow with valuable information, it became increasingly difficult to handle.

Sales records are stored in one system, customer service interactions are logged in another, and website traffic data is tracked through a separate analytics service. Each day, you toggle between these systems, trying to piece together insights that could drive your business decisions. 

Becoming a victim of your success is common for growing businesses. Trying to manage multiple data sources without a unified view can cause you to miss opportunities and operate less efficiently. To fix this, we recommend striving to first consolidate and manage these diverse data streams in one place, and second, plan for how you’ll visualize the data.

Why consolidate diverse data streams in one place? 

The consequences can look different depending on your business context, but there are five themes we see when working with clients who don’t consolidate: 

  1. Lost Time: 
    • A fragmented approach to data collection and storage consumes valuable time and increases the likelihood you will overlook critical data trends.
  2. Inconsistencies and Errors: 
    • Data scattered across different platforms can lead to inconsistencies and errors. When data isn't synchronized, there's a higher risk of making decisions based on outdated or incorrect information, which can lead to costly mistakes.
  3. Delayed Responses: 
    • If you're stuck trying to gather and reconcile data from multiple sources, your response time slows down. This delay can mean missing out on critical opportunities or failing to address emerging challenges in a timely manner.
  4. Barrier to Growth: 
    • As your business grows, so does the complexity of managing more data. If the foundation of your data management is disorganized, scaling up becomes a much heavier lift.
  5. Employee Frustration and Productivity Loss: 
    • Navigating through a maze of data systems can be frustrating and demotivating for employees, affecting their productivity and job satisfaction.

Why plan for how to visualize your data? 

Remember the toggling you do between your data sources? Consolidating them in one place is like neatly storing everything in one room, but you can’t see anything with the door to the room shut. You have to think about how you’d like to take items out of the room and into your workspace to use them. Planning for data visualization helps our clients with: 

  1. Enhanced Decision-Making:
    • Dashboards provide a consolidated view of key performance indicators (KPIs) across various aspects of a business, enabling quick, informed decisions. 
  2. Increased Operational Efficiency: 
    • Dashboards automate the process of collecting and compiling data, reducing time and effort required for manual data analysis.
  3. Improved Visibility and Transparency: 
    • Visual representation of data makes complex information accessible and understandable, fostering a collaborative environment.
  4. Proactive Management and Response: 
    • Real-time data allows managers to anticipate problems and take preemptive actions, crucial for dynamic industries.
  5. Strategic Business Growth: 
    • Historical data trends and forecasting tools aid in identifying growth opportunities and optimizing resource allocation.

TSL Example: A custom CRM for a medical spa

The Challenge

A medical spa was trying to use MindBody, a business management software, and kept running into limitations with trying to use the API in order to customize how they accessed and worked with multiple types of data. They decided to try to build their own, custom, client relationship management (CRM) system. During this attempt, they contacted TSL for help.

Key Outcomes

  • More efficient scheduling management: Spending far less time processing sales meant staff could focus on marketing and other supporting activity that increases net revenue.  
  • Improved customer satisfaction: Operations staff were able to complete transactions more easily and quickly, giving them more attention to focus on customers and create customer-centered experiences.
  • Business growth: As the client implemented custom software with TSL’s help, they were able to open several new locations over a shorter time, without having to double their operations staff size 

Consolidating all of their data streams as part of building this custom CRM meant this medical spa could define how they stored different types of data, how they accessed them, and how they analyzed and showed that data to different employee roles in the business. 

Your turn: getting started on consolidating and visualization planning  

You may very well have a strong data science team in place to work with your engineering team. You can appoint one or two people to head up a project to audit your current data streams, map them, and audit the way that data is leveraged to get started. 

Or, you may need to look outside your company for help. When looking outside, we have some tips for having a great discovery call with an agency. The tips tend to be for people looking to create a new product or business, but you’ll get a sense of how to prepare and the nature of the questions you might be asked. You should also feel free to ask the agency directly about their experience with databases and data visualization and to show you any case studies they have of previous related work. You are also, of course, welcome to get in touch with us for help

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