CATCH UP: Using data to drive a hybrid future (part 2)
CATCH UP: Using data to drive a hybrid future (part 1)
Following on from our first instalment, here’s part two to the webinar we hosted on Thursday 7th April – as part of our #TigerTalks series. If you missed the session, below summarises the second half of the discussion. You can also access the recording, here.
Data to empower ‘difficult’ conversations
In the wake of the discussion about contextualising data, webinar host Katie Mallinson asked the panel – Tiger’s sales director Caroline Lewis and Phillipa Winter, account chief technologist at Softcat – whether data can help empower more tricky dialogue around change, and both panellists agreed this was the case.
Phillipa first gave her rationale in a healthcare context. The sector has to put a lot on the risk register, and technology can support risk mitigation, she added.
She explained: “Having intelligence from data to identify what can be done differently with technology brings with it many qualitative benefits and ROI – the latter not always being financial, but in terms of quality and safety too.”
Caroline explored how risks vary from one company to another, and how data provides the black and white evidence to back up any business-critical decision-making.
How can IT budgets be optimised through data analytics
Any investment for an organisation usually has to demonstrate its ROI.
Phillipa explained how data is empowering leaders in many ways, such as identifying peak periods throughout the day – and in turn when more staff are needed – along with if an organisation is overpaying for its software licences. She added that when a business starts to understand its data, that’s when it can identify what it doesn’t need.
“From evaluating when more staff need to be on the phones in a call centre to if too many – or few – people have a certain level of Microsoft Teams licence, this can not only help to optimise resource and finances, but it can also help to streamline the tech estate,” she commented.
Phillipa continued by talking about how when writing a business case for technology, it’s important to outline who will take responsibility for delivering the ROI and what the measurables are.
For instance, this could be reducing travel costs, decreasing estate expenditure, improving the health and wellbeing of staff, reducing sickness rates, or increasing tech adoption among employees – the possibilities are endless when a layer of analytics is applied to the data.
Caroline further compounded this by explaining how it’s difficult for tech decision-makers to understand all the benefits of a piece of technology if they’re not rolling it out to all departments.
“Everyone has a seat at the table when it comes to data analytics and each individual team can help to drive efficiencies forward with the information relevant to them,” she added.
Shining the data spotlight on the education sector
The remaining part of the webinar looked specifically at education – namely the student experience.
Caroline explained how some disgruntled students were requesting refunds from their universities for experiencing a ‘poor education’ during the pandemic, due to more online learning. However, she explained how data has been shown to support education authorities in proving which students haven’t fulfilled their side of the bargain – for example, not turning up to lectures or not engaging in video seminars.
As a result, this hasn’t only helped to protect the institution financially but from a reputational point of view too.
A question also came in from the audience about whether data will be able to be used to predict student course drop-outs before they happen.
Caroline answered: “Data is all about predictive and early warning systems – understanding a trend before it becomes negative. If a student is really engaged with a high attendance in the first semester but this massively drops in the second one, faculty teams can then take action much faster to support a student.”
Parting thoughts about data of the future
Phillipa commented that the more data an organisation has and the more machine learning and artificial intelligence that can be layered onto this to give context and drive decisions, creates a world of opportunity.
From early diagnoses in healthcare to saving on estate costs in the corporate world, Phillipa reiterated the importance of understanding that initial ‘exam question’ and what the organisational priority is.
“It’s only once this is established that leaders can start to ask real questions, invest wisely, and let analytics tell the story,” she added.
Caroline concluded that with data, it’s not about having the golden chalice locked behind a door that no one has access to, it’s about making sure that data is secure but democratised and accessible to those who can do something meaningful with it.
Alternatively, if you’d like to get in touch with a member of the Tiger team about unlocking the data in your organisation, please get in touch on firstname.lastname@example.org.
Don’t forget to sign up for our second webinar in the series on 28th April which will provide a product update on Tiger Prism from our COO Ben Nicklen. For more information and to book your place click here.