Data Culture Part 1: Definition

Everything You Need to Know about Data Culture

Whether or not you’ve heard the phrase, “data culture” is a phenomenon happening all around us, from within the biggest corporations to the smallest startups. The term, in brief, refers to a collective set of behaviors and beliefs held by a group of people who “value, practice, and encourage the use of data to improve decision-making.” 

The reasons data culture is hitting both boardrooms and grassroots groups are manifold, but there’s one unifying fact: 

Everyone has data.

Data culture is about whether or not you’re using that data. 

From customer surveys to projected sales, most companies don’t have a problem gathering data. In fact, the sheer volume of available data is astounding, partially because the increased availability of digital systems makes budgets and time logs more automatic. 

But not every organization recognizes the best way to utilize their data, or how data culture can benefit their systems. 

The data shows…. 

Becoming a data-driven organization has benefits. 

Cindi Howson, a chief data strategy officer, has pointed out “data-driven companies enjoy increased revenue, improved customer service, best-in-class operating efficiencies, and improved profitability.”  

In the same vein, McKinsey research suggests executives from many industries have encountered initial barriers when trying to build data culture from within an existing enterprise, but the incentives and results have been worth the challenge. It seems while many employees acknowledge data is valuable, they don’t immediately see how it fits into their role. There is occasional reluctance and skepticism around the idea that data could be, or should be, a foundation for well-reasoned decisions. 

Part of the cynicism around data is the shifting digital landscape, but it’s also a lack of connection between employee and company goals. Being told data is better than intuition can make employees feel valueless and defensive. To create a work environment that utilizes the best of both human ingenuity and clear data-driven answers, data culture is the answer. When employees are empowered to ask questions and challenge ideas—by using their minds as well as data—it’s easier for a group to unite over a shared mission, and make better decisions. 

Achieving a healthy data culture within an organization is in no uncertain terms about both data itself, and the people. 

But one practical aspect of data culture needs mentioning: the technology. 

When people have tools they need to complete a task efficiently, an organization can thrive. When growing data culture, provide employees with technology to support the management and visualization of data. This act expresses an organization’s willingness to invest in the work and the people involved. This investment will also improve how employees view their own roles—they become empowered to access and utilize data more coherently if they given technology that supports their tasks. 

And don’t stress! The tools you need are in fact available; the technology is here. If your company uses Microsoft products, you might already be familiar with Microsoft’s Power BI to view dashboards and reports all together on one screen. Tableau is another powerful data aggregator that helps teams better understand complex data in robust 2-D visual designs.  

Newton by Triplidata takes it one step further, working with tools like Tableau to make data even more powerful and easy to understand. The patented design pops off the page in a rotating 3-D program called Newton, engaging the brain more directly and hosting layers of aggregated data with mobile drilldown technology.

Step one towards a healthy data culture is equipping yourself with the tools, so get a fresh perspective with Newton now.