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Mark Sheldon Villanueva

By: Mark Sheldon Villanueva on September 21st, 2021

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Data Analytics Challenges and How to Handle Them

Data Analytics

Data analytics might bring a host of amazing benefits to your organization. However, you will first have to navigate the challenges. Find out how to handle the most common challenges businesses face when implementing data analytics. 

Business Intelligence (BI) makes data-driven decision-making in real-time a tangible reality. It’s been touted to offer businesses near-miraculous benefits like identifying new opportunities to increase profit, optimizing operations, or even predicting success. 

Now, I know you might be thinking that it’s all too good to be true and that BI is complete BS.  

However, you might want to hold that thought after taking a look at these numbers: 

  • According to a survey by MicroStrategy, 64% of users reported that BI data and analytics helped improve their efficiency and productivity. 56% of subjects believed it has allowed them to make more effective decisions faster, while 51% think it has led to better financial performance. 
  • In a separate study conducted by Deloitte, it was found that CEOs who spearhead data-driven decision-making were 77% more likely to achieve business goals. 

With these figures in mind, I can assure you the benefits of BI are not only real; they’re measurable. 

Unfortunately, despite all the perceived benefits, BI adoption still falls short at only around 31% according to a NewVantage Partners survey of large U.S. firms. 

In fact, when ITS had a chat with our clients to find new ways to support their businesses with technology, we found that while people believed business intelligence was important, they didn’t have any solutions for it. 

So why aren’t more businesses transitioning into data-driven organizations? The answer is simple, achieving effective business intelligence requires heavy investment in data analytics. 

In this article, we’ll help identify the challenges you might face when it comes to data analytics and how can you overcome them. 

Related article: Data Analytics: The Business Owner's Complete Guide in 2022

Common challenges of Data AnalyticsBusiness Intelligence button

When done effectively, data analytics can help your organization achieve business intelligence. It can show you the bigger picture through your data that will allow you to make better decisions faster. But to get there, you need to navigate a host of different challenges. 

Here are some of the common challenges you might face in implementing data analytics and how you can manage them: 

Time investment 

We’ve heard from our clients before that while they believe it’s important to get a handle on their data, building and designing a data analytics solution requires a significant time investment. For many, the time spent building a solution could have been better spent generating more revenue. 

How you can manage: 

There’s no going around it; you need to sit down and talk about your data. However, if you think you’re saving time by missing out on BI by refusing to invest it in data analytics, you might actually be losing more of it. 

Data analytics tools can automate the gathering, presenting, and reporting of data, which can help you analyze information and gain actionable insights much faster. That gives you an edge that can help you increase your revenue or stay ahead of the competition. 

Budget constraints 

Data analytics solutions can be expensive. Not only do you need to invest in a tool, but in some cases, you might even need to hire analysts and data scientists to help get the job done. 

How you can manage: 

Self-service analytics tools have been on the rise, so there are plenty of low-cost options to choose from. In any case, you can also start small. Some BI tools offer free versions that you can take advantage of. While it won’t be as comprehensive as the paid version, it can certainly help you get started on your transition. 

Lack of integration 

Some systems might not work well with certain data analytics solutions. That can cause issues that either make data analysis take longer, or worse, some insights from your data might get lost in translation. 

How you can manage: 

Ensure that the analytics solution you’re considering can be integrated with your existing systems. When in doubt, you can always ask an expert like your managed IT service provider (MSP). They know your network ecosystem and can recommend a solution that fits. 

Low business impact 

Some businesses have reported that data analytics have little impact on their operations. In fact, some are even struggling to justify the return on investment of setting up a data analytics tool. 

How you can manage: 

If your analytics solution isn’t getting you the results you’re looking for, it might indicate that either the tool you’re using doesn’t fit your needs or that you’re not using it optimally. 

We’ve seen many cases like this wherein company leadership might have specific insights they need but don’t necessarily know which data they should be looking at to get them. You can leverage data analysts and experts to help set up your analytics tools for cases like these. 

In some cases, a reliable MSP might be able to act as a consultant to help guide you in the right direction. 

Data from different sources 

Chances are, your organization is already collecting data about your business operations. The problem is, you are also most likely gathering data from a variety of different systems and software, making data collection a time-consuming and challenging task. 

How you can manage: 

Some analytics solutions offer features like automating info gathering and can integrate into the different data sources you might be using. 

Low team involvement 

Creating a data-driven culture requires your team’s involvement in ensuring your data is accurate and up to date. Unfortunately, a lot of analytics tools have low company-wide adoption. 

How you can manage: 

This might be another side effect of poor integration. Make it easier for your team to get involved by choosing analytics solutions that work well with current software they’re already using on a daily basis. Some options even offer mobile platforms that mean you and your team have access to your data wherever and whenever you are. 

Ready to transition into a data-driven organization? 

There might be challenges ahead when you decide to leverage business intelligence for your organization. However, we can assure you that when done right, it will all be worth the effort. 

At ITS, we take proactive steps to help our clients get the most out of their tech and their data.  

Want to get started on data analytics? Reach out to our experts to find out how we can help. 

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