Data Is Changing the Way Enterprises Optimize Employee Productivity

July 21, 2015
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For a very long time, we’ve been viewing data as a collection of valuable information. Yes, that’s what it is. But everything turns around when you start perceiving data as a signal for decision-making. In the enterprise world, data performs the function of informant to the experienced strategist. The largest businesses have to be led by tactical geniuses who know how to take the data they collect and transform it into a precedent for determining what “the next step” is.

For a very long time, we’ve been viewing data as a collection of valuable information. Yes, that’s what it is. But everything turns around when you start perceiving data as a signal for decision-making. In the enterprise world, data performs the function of informant to the experienced strategist. The largest businesses have to be led by tactical geniuses who know how to take the data they collect and transform it into a precedent for determining what “the next step” is. This is the kind of mentality we have to follow in an environment that is fast-paced and constantly demanding your attention.

Data analysis helps a firm understand its market and therefore grow. But it doesn’t just do that. Your employees can also become more productive when they use data-driven tools that provide more enhanced methods with which they can work.

Data and the Customer

Interaction with customers has evolved. Customer-facing staff, as a result of newer trends in various industries, must change their approaches and methods to fit the very high demands that a company’s customers have. One good example of this is in the marketing department, where people have to be adept at both using and analyzing social media, joining conversations with potential customers rather than starting them. On Twitter, you can see this happening with enormous frequency, although Facebook should not be discounted. Companies are now using their social media presences to engage the entire world by “butting in” and participating in their chatter. 

Data collected from social media can help gauge how successful certain conversations have been, and new age social media platforms can measure the ROI of social campaigns. The amount of activity and replies helps you learn what works with the demographic you are trying to appeal to.

These are all reactions to trends that have come about because of changes in consumer behavior and innovations that facilitate this behavior in different areas. The Internet has made the whole “build it and they will come” mantra obsolete. It’s time for businesses to approach their customers in a way that does not appear to market to them directly. Today’s ideal business is one that responds rapidly and decisively to social change. Using proper analysis tools can help foster that kind of culture among employees. Customer service now needs access to more data at a faster pace than ever before.

The way we do business is beginning to transform into something completely reliant on the keen eye of the tools that we use to analyze our data. With an inferior capability in this respect, you risk being left behind by competitors regardless of how well you run other aspects of your business. How a company uses its data has become a major factor in how successful it can expect to be in the long run.

The Employee of Tomorrow Is Here Today

Employees today find themselves under increasing amounts of pressure, having to adapt constantly with the ebbs and flows of the way in which business is done. Many of them have difficulty finding motivation when they aren’t properly provoked into bettering their own work. This is where data-driven gamification steps in and helps them fill the void of the daily grind with something a bit more interactive, entertaining, and informative.

Gamifying an employee’s performance can accelerate the sales process, training, skill development, and innovation. The data involved in this particular process composes the various metrics that determine an employee’s performance (i.e. number of calls completed, average time for completion, etc.), and employees can “play” against themselves or each other.

Gamification transforms what would otherwise be a boring day at work into something with a little more excitement and a side dish of self-improvement – all while enhancing productivity along the way. Competing against oneself helps discourage complacency and instead fosters an attitude of determination.

In addition to gamification, a transparent platform for analytics can help enable positive action from upper management regarding employees’ performances. Mitigating drops in productivity works better when you fully understand what’s wrong with the work an employee is putting in and the frequency at which the drops occur. Eventually, you will see a recurring weakness, and you can subsequently ensure that employees have suitable training. With the help of enterprise gamification, employees can be more responsive to new concepts and methodologies, particularly if they feel incentivized with achievements.

Speaking of upper management, it should go without saying that an adequate ERP helps HR departments properly route a company’s manpower to areas where more attention is needed. A good HRM platform will make the job of determining the median level of productivity needed to attain certain goals easier.

If employees are the heart of a business, and if management is the brain, then data is the hemoglobin that carries oxygen around the body, letting the muscles drive the body forward. In other words, if you don’t manage your data, you risk going catatonic.