Organizations with mature enterprise data strategies in place for 12 months report higher profit growth at an average of 5.97%, according to senior business decision makers (SDMs) surveyed between July and September this year.

Some 96% of SDMs in the survey commissioned by Cloudera had reported that the way data was handled and managed had positively impacted their organizations’ performance, and 64% reported stronger levels of resilience from the presence of a mature data strategy.

Both SDMs and IT decision-makers (ITDMs) in the survey shared similar views, recognizing data as a strategic business resource, but these groups had differing opinions on operational processes and implementation.

Four observations

The data pointed to some possible correlations between the maturity of an organization’s enterprise data strategy and its business performance:

  1. Data lifecycle challenges hinder innovation
    Visibility remained a key issue for the 2,100 IT decision makers (ITDMs) and 1,050 SDMs in the survey. Some 89% of respondents reported that secure, centralized governance and compliance over the entire lifecycle was valuable when handling and managing data. Also, 12% of surveyed ITDMs reported that their organization interacted with all stages of the data lifecycle process­­—which was helpful for organizations to achieve an enterprise data strategy. Without complete control and visibility over every aspect of data, organizations will lack key capabilities required to drive innovation, asserted the survey authors.
  2. Effective enterprise data strategies remain key
    Organizations in the survey saw the value in enterprise data strategies but struggled to make them effective. Respondents that had been utilizing enterprise data strategies for more than a year reported them to be very effective (63%), along with higher profit growth.

    Some 91% of ITDMs whose organizations had an enterprise data strategy in place agreed to prompts that their current strategy was key to business resilience. SDMs surveyed reported an average of US$384,962 lost annually due to missed opportunities involving data, with the telecommunications industry reporting the highest average annual loss of USa$6,617,348.
  3. The future Is hybrid
    The survey data shows an anticipated shift by respondents to hybrid cloud in the next 18 months. Both SDMs and ITDMs reported that 43.07% of their workforce were expected to continue working remotely in the next year.

    Respondents were investing in infrastructure to support hybrid working environments. Some 79% of ITDMs’ organizations were looking to house their data and performance analytics on hybrid architectures.

    Among cloud options, 44% preferred multi-cloud architecture—the largest group. With the hybrid data cloud, respondents indicated they can access and analyze data fast and with ease, to make smarter data-driven decisions.

    Of the SDMs surveyed, 92% believed that making sense of all data across hybrid, multi-cloud and on-premises architectures is or would be valuable. This compared well with the ITDMs, of which 90% felt the same.

    Finally, 89% of respondents believed that organizations implementing a hybrid architecture as part of data strategy will gain a competitive advantage.
  4. Data drives success beyond profits
    Most respondents recognized the link between Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) initiatives and organizational success. The research found that thoughtful data collection and analytics contribute to the success of DEI initiatives.
  • 96% of ITDMs and 95% of SDMs in the survey believed that data and analytics are important to ensuring successful and effective DEI initiatives.
  • 95% of both ITDMs and SDMs agreed to prompts that DEI initiatives contribute to organizational success.
  • Respondents with effective enterprise data strategies in place indicated they were better able to utilize data and analytics to benchmark and evaluate employee diversity programs. With greater visibility over diversity within organizations came benefits in decision-making, innovation and workplace engagement.
Mark Micallef, Vice President, APJ, Cloudera

Outlook for the region

According to Mark Micallef, Vice President of Asia Pacific and Japan, Cloudera: “Beyond improving productivity and reducing costs, augmenting the customer experience has been a key driver of digital transformation. Data-driven businesses are better at understanding, communicating, and engaging with customers. APAC businesses are acutely aware of this and the majority of businesses are using data and analytics to improve customer experience and satisfaction. However, even as enterprises prioritize investments in data for business insights, they need to have a holistic enterprise data strategy and an enterprise data cloud approach in place. Data is a strategic asset, and the right data strategy will allow enterprises to control costs and minimize risks while achieving competitive differentiation.”

In APAC, 95% of SDMs surveyed saw the value in making sense of all data across hybrid, multi-cloud and on-premises architectures—the highest percentage globally. Yet, many respondents were struggling to implement effective strategies to manage data volume and costs. “As economies reopen, businesses will need to rethink their strategies to be able to drive their digital transformations in order to meet and exceed the expectations of today’s customers as well as their own employees. With many organizations looking to promote DEI, data can be used to drive such objectives and promote change,” Micallef said.