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Business is Changing. Are Your Reports?

DECEMBER 19, 2018

If you’re operating in 2018 (almost 2019!), chances are your company is very “data-driven.” Translation: Corporate and field teams make decisions based on data about customers, operations, and anything else they can get their hands on. The result takes many forms: binders of reports; a weekly excel document with 20 tabs; multiple dashboards.

A data-driven business is still (and will always be) a “people-driven” one.

All that data can feel a little impersonal, but a data-driven business is still (and will always be) a “people-driven” one. All organizations are people businesses, run by humans to serve the needs of others. Your teams—the ones who serve your customers, staff and stock your  stores, communicate goals, and coach each other to success—need to be empowered, not bogged down by binders and excel sheets. Data loses its impact when it lives in separate tools, departmental silos, or exists only in its rawest form for non-analysts (95% of your team) to review. The risks? Miscommunication, misalignment, and missed opportunities.

The business model has changed across all industries… have your reporting methods?

Are your reports: 

Built for all leaders

Data has democratized. And the wider its reach, the more user friendly it needs to be. Reports used to be for senior leaders, who would distill insights into a corporate strategy. But now it’s your front-line staff closest to the action who need data fast. If you get reporting right, you can directly supply store managers with the information they need to move metrics. Instead of one leader directing the masses, each manager can choose the best actions for their store, today. That trust and empowerment also drives job satisfaction and reduces turnover.

As active as your stores

Your stores are active and lively… your reports should be, too! Static dashboards don’t reflect your dynamic business (or your customers’ expectations). Think about all the ways your omnichannel strategy has transformed your stores; have the reports your store managers use most kept up?

Frequent enough

Frequent updates are key. Your twitter feed sends instant updates on anything and everything at a moment’s notice. But the metrics that feed your brand’s success? A new report may get posted on a shared drive once a week or maybe even daily. But imagine if each data point came out at the most useful cadence for the business—smart frequencies and filtering could finally turn that flood of data into a useful tool. If all is well, your staff might just need start- and end-of-day updates. If the store is missing its mark, then they could get the actionable data points that fix the problem, right now.

Tailored to the store-level

High-level information isn’t actionable for stores. How does the store team impact Net Sales today? Maybe they know, but maybe they don’t. Break it down into the driving metrics—things like stock-outs, staffing, and loyalty programs—and they now have the specific tactics needed to drive that Sales number. Bonus points if those actions are tailored for each store’s unique environment. For some, it’s product availability holding back sales; for others, low customer service engagement keeps customers away. Your store teams can problem-solve more efficiently when they’re solving the right problems in the first place.

 

Legacy reporting systems just aren’t cutting it anymore. Data needs to be smarter, faster, and customized for store-specific needs. The right information at the right time lets your store teams  excel at their jobs and delight your customers.

Interested in an actionable one-stop shop for your data? Let’s talk!  .

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: SARAH KAMPMAN

As our VP of Product, Sarah finds solutions for customers that they didn’t even realize they needed. With almost 15 years in product management and more than 20 years in technology overall, Sarah specializes in creating long-term focus groups with valued clients, helping them use technology to meet their business needs. She understands that building relationships through empathy leads to the most dynamic ideas and strategies. Driven by a passion for behavioral economics and a desire to study how people make decisions, Sarah received a BA in Cognitive Science from University of California at Berkeley.