Your organisation produces more data than ever before, but it’s probably becoming more difficult to differentiate between the accurate and the misleading, the valuable and the disposable.
Knowledge and insight should form the bedrock of every decision a company makes, but unreliable data renders an organisation vulnerable, and inaccurate or inconsistent information can lead to costly mistakes. How can you ensure that the information underlying your key business decisions is accurate, current, and entirely consistent across your organisation?
This can be hard to achieve in a business that generates complex information about assets, parts, staff, customers, suppliers, project costs, and supply chain status across multiple projects in numerous locations. The right enterprise software, however, can help you unlock the true value of the knowledge that already exists within your organisation.
What are the key knowledge challenges for improving your business’s agility?
Understanding the status of your business
The ability to draw on a “single version of the truth” across your full organisation is a major challenge for complex organisations. From knowing how you can reallocate resources to deal with surges in demand, to providing urgent reports in highly regulated industries, or tracking every step and interaction of a long-term customer relationship, access and accuracy is a powerful tool.
Information regarding your assets, for example, is incredibly valuable across a huge range of industries. It needs to be tracked across the asset’s full lifecycle, from design, through operation and maintenance, to decommissioning. The ability to get a full and accurate picture across each of these phases of the lifecycle enables you to optimise performance and maximise that asset’s value to the business. Can your enterprise software deliver this information, quickly and reliably?
The importance of usability
Consistent and accurate information is only useful if the people who need it can access it, understand it, and use it to take action. User experience is a crucial challenge for enterprise software. If software is cumbersome and unintuitive users will avoid using it, negating the point of deploying it in the first place. Instead, information needs to be easy to access, digest, interrogate, and input, for a wide range of users with different needs and skillsets.
Access to information, where and when you need it
Employees expect to be able to work effectively wherever they are. Providing staff with data on the move, and the ability to update the core system of record as they work, irrespective of where they are, can be mission critical.
The productivity of site visits or customer engagements is greatly impaired if your employees do not have the ability to access information held centrally. And if they have to wait until they are back in the office before acting on these visits or engagements, valuable time is lost. These delays can be extremely costly when applied across all mobile workers in an enterprise scale business, and damage customer relations if records and reality fall out of sync.
Understanding and modelling the future
Being able to spot threats and opportunities before they occur – and know the implications of different responses to them – can help you exploit opportunities before your competitors, and develop action plans for risk management.
For an international enterprise, identifying and understanding key contingencies and dependencies across complex supply chains or multiple projects can be challenging. With the right enterprise system in place, however, you can plan for different scenarios, and develop and test strategic responses based on different conditions.
From competitively but profitably pricing long-term support contracts based on detailed knowledge of past costs and staffing levels, to modelling the impact of large strategic decisions like entering a new market, testing scenarios with accurate operational data can make the difference between success and failure.
Read our White paper: Improving operational agility