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5 Steps for Higher-Quality Data

Higher-Quality Data, data, data science, data, data scientist, data management, data modeling, data model, smart data

Introduction

Source: Harvard Business Review

There’s one thing that you as a business owner really has to look out for, and that’s poor data quality.  Machine learning (ML) especially can get harmed by using data that’s bad, as higher-quality data is a high demand part of ML.  Bad data can appear in historical data that’s used to train the predictive model, causing new data contamination, therefore giving bad solutions to future decisions that might be made for the business.

In order to train the predictive model correctly, the data’s correct, properly marked, formatted and be the right data.  You can’t make a predictive model if by mistake the data scientist is given the wrong information to sort out.  Presently most data fails to meet standards.  Causes include that the data creators don’t understand what’s expected of the data, measurements are poorly calibrated, processes are to complex and just plain human error.

It can in turn take up to 80% of data scientists time just to clean up the data given to them, even though it isn’t guaranteed that everything’s repaired before putting it into the predictive model.  This can cause further problems as more and more ML technology becomes popular.  The output from one model feeds another and another, all the way down the line, crossing department lines.  So if there’s even a small error it will cascade, causing more and more errors.

5 Steps of Higher Quality Data

  1. Clarify Objectives and Assess if you Have the Right Data to Support the Objectives – If it doesn’t meet goals, find new data or scale back goals, or both.
  2. Build Plenty of Time to Execute Data Quality Fundamentals into the Overall Project Plan – Start 6 months’ out
  3. Maintain Audit Trail Preparing Training Data – Helps to understand biases and limitations in the model. The audit trail helps to sort it out.
  4. Charge Specific Person or Team with Responsibility for Data Quality When Releasing the Data Model – They need to have some strong knowledge of the data, set and enforce standards, and are in charge of finding and getting rid of the root causes of any errors found.
  5. Have Independent, Exact Quality Assurance – The key word here is independent.

Summary

These steps won’t fully guarantee that your data is completely error free.  But it’ll be better than using data that hasn’t gone through these 5 steps.  This in turn makes for use of an extremely powerful tool in ML.  Think of everything that done if the data is of a higher quality, and how much more you can learn about your business, the competition, and your customers.

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Digital Transformation – 5 Identifiers

digital, digital transformation, upgrading systems, upgrading business systems, business systems

What is Digital Transformation?

Numerous changes happen where digital economy of business is connected real-time due to new technologies. Digital transformation is directly related due to this. Just about all small and midsized firms have some sort of resources in place. It can be anything from newer and more powerful software and/or computers, new forms of communication or cloud computing. The company has to ensure good implementation and integration of programs to increase performance. How to do this is:

5 Identifiers

  1. Hyper-connectivity – Anytime/Anywhere communication
  2. Unlimited Computing Power – Caused through diverse platforms
  3. Cloud Computing – Easy access to hosted software/services
  4. Numerous Sensors and Mobile Devices – Supply continuous streams of information and ways to access them
  5. Cybersecurity – Lessen internal/external vulnerabilities

Why Buy At All?

Faster growing companies look at ways to drive revenue growth, increase productivity, and get new customers. This is supported through the use of advanced technology. The question becomes what is the best approach to get and use new technology in order to support objectives? Most are buying advanced software applications to help grow their businesses. Buying collaboration software, CRM and ecommerce all help growing businesses through helping internal productivity and efficiency. When one application is updated, they all are. This improves performance of the agency as a whole.

Causes to Upgrade

Most upgrade due to partner and/or customer needs. Their main focus is to improve internally.  External influence is also taken into consideration though. Who wants to chase away potential clients due to not listening to their needs too? This is key in order to keep up with competition and the environment that they work in. Effective coordination of technology brings in greater performance results.  It is greater then the sum of the parts bought to improve the system as a whole.

Benefits

The departments that benefit the most from these improvements is sales and marketing. Everyone from services to manufacturing to wholesale and retail benefit too. Internal processes is also up there, but externally faced business is considered more important. This is the rank from highest to lowest in importance:

  • Sales
  • Marketing
  • Production / Operations
  • Commerce / Ecommerce
  • Customer Service / Call Center
  • Finance
  • Supply Chain Management
  • Manufacturing
  • Strategic Planning
  • HR

3 Takeaways 

  1. Leverage Technology
  2. Digital transformation is a continuing process
  3. Direct / Continuing participation and support of senior management and executives. If there is none, or it is perceived as none, then changes will be hard to implement.

Key Questions to Ask

Key questions to ask yourself and those involved in the process of beginning the changes are many. Where are you falling short compared to other companies? What is the competition doing that you are not? Do you have a strategic plan in place that supports digital transformation? Some things to consider…

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Strategic Management Process – 4 Steps

strategic mananagement process, strategic, strategic management planning, planning, management planning

The strategic management process is where the company’s strategy is defined. The managers choose types of strategies they want used to reach higher performance levels. It’s a continuous process that focuses on businesses and industries where the agency is involved. The company looks at the competition and figures out ways to get ahead of them.

4 Steps to the Strategic Management Process

  1. Environmental Scanning – Collect, analyze and pass along information for strategic means. Analyze internal and external factors that influence the company. This will be completed periodically, and improvements can be done continuously.
  2. Strategy Formulation – Choose the best course of action. Corporate, business and functional strategies are created here.
  3. Strategy Implementation – Work the new strategy as it is intended to. The design of processes is completed here like the business structure and distribution of resources.
  4. Strategy Evaluation – The final step. Review internal and external factors, measure performance, and take corrective actions.

Why Use The Strategic Management Process?

Always use these four steps in chronological order to create new strategic management plans. There is no stopping as the company realizes that all the steps work together and in chorus. The agency will evaluate and control business and industries where the organization works. Most of all it evaluates competitors and sets goals and strategies to better compete with them. As a result it reevaluates strategies in place to ensure implementing is done correctly.

It seems like the question that has to be asked needs to be; is it successful or does it need to be replaced? Roles of the strategic management process are to create functional areas and make sure they work well together. Furthermore to keep an eye on goals and objectives of what the business wants, and make sure that they are followed and used correctly.  Especially relevant is that if it isn’t used correctly damage can be done to the company in question.