Business Intelligence Buyer's Guide

Driving Value and Accelerating Business Innovation Amidst Budget Cuts

Driving Value and Accelerating Business Innovation Amidst Budget Cuts

Driving Value and Accelerating Business Innovation Amidst Budget Cuts

Solutions Review’s Premium Content Series is a collection of contributed articles written by industry experts in enterprise software categories. In this feature, Alteryx CIO Trevor Schulze offers commentary on driving value and accelerating innovation amidst budget cuts.

Organizations are under increasing financial and competitive pressure, all while needing to keep up with growing customer demands. They are seeking ways to differentiate performance from peers, prioritize key products and services, and position their companies to thrive in today’s competitive market.

Unfortunately, today’s current economic climate has many business and IT leaders navigating budget cuts while trying to avoid critical mistakes that could hamper progress toward business goals. But priorities such as digitization, customer experience, time to market, and increasing revenue remain top of mind for business leaders – regardless of economic cycles.

Companies that demonstrate resilience during times of crisis invest in ways of working that galvanize innovation by expanding – not contracting – access to core technologies. IT leaders can turn adversity into opportunity by making informed decisions about where to cut, maintain, or even increase technology spending. After all, those who wisely invest in their digital capabilities – and data – in a downturn have proven time and time again to come out the other side stronger and pull away from their competition.

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Value Innovation & Budget Cuts

Making Long-Term Intentional Decisions

Combining the current economy with increased corporate overhead costs, many business and IT leaders feel forced to implement broad-brush budget cuts, which could mean penalizing both efficient parts and high-performing areas of an organization. This can result in lost value and negatively impact the organization’s ability to remain competitive.

IT leaders who move too quickly with these cuts in an attempt to streamline operations may very well complicate existing processes and introduce potentially harmful risks to the organization. They need to approach these decisions intentionally using an asset they already have: data.

The mission of data and analytics is to manage data resources and create analytic insight that can help organizations make the most informed decisions to better navigate these rocky times. Further, the ability to squeeze every ounce of strategic and operational insight from company data is increasingly essential to increasing profitability and uncovering new revenue streams that will help the company thrive.

IT leaders who can identify sources of complexity and inefficiency and predict the impact of changes will give stakeholders and decision-makers the confidence to maintain spending on resources that deliver tangible business value. For those looking to trim budget without hampering business acceleration, the following strategies are critical to success:

Get Everyone Working With Data

Data and analytics strategies connected to operating models will put business and IT leaders in a position to positively impact operational costs, reduce exposure to business risk, and deliver on the promise of business value. But first, organizations need to build a culture where data is the basis of every decision and strategy and where all employees are on board with this approach and mindset.

You need to ensure everyone across an organization knows how to use data to make better decisions. Make it easy by providing no-code/low-code automation solutions that enable any employee, regardless of their technical skills, to turn data into powerful business insights. This will help your business more easily navigate the unpreditable climate ahead. Furthermore, investing in democratizing data and analytics results in long-term resilience beyond the budget cuts many organizations are faced with today.

Use a Variety of Data Sources & Types

You don’t need to always start from zero each time you have a business problem to solve. In fact, the answers you need to make better decisions are often hiding in plain sight, yet not enough organizations are mining through all of their resources. This is a missed opportunity when you consider that organizations that use a variety of data sources and types are best positioned to get insights that lead to improved customer acquisition, retention, and experience.

Do More With Less

Oftentimes, business units fall victim to “tool sprawl” and run up cloud costs on dozens of disconnected tools that can’t scale across multiple teams – making point solutions easier targets for budget cuts and leaving teams who rely on them in the dust.

Investing in platforms that support multiple personas, unlimited use cases, and feature expansion is key to reducing costs, driving ROI and future proofing investments. Users will also be the first to experiment and take advantage of system updates and new features as they’re introduced, driving faster innovation. Not having to find point solutions for every niche problem you come across will save you from the hassle of onboarding a new vendor every single time, especially considering your platform may be introducing the new capabilities and modules you may very well need.

Case in point: a new study from BCG found that using “a data platform and flexible, scalable technology platforms and applications to facilitate data access and support business needs easily and flexibly” is one of the key attributes of companies best positioned to move into new high-growth markets.

Focus on Tasks that Matter Most

Another key area of investment to discuss with your stakeholders is to enable your team to do more and increase productivity by doubling down on automation.

Why have knowledge workers spend their time doing manual work in spreadsheets, when they can spend their time working on projects that drive top-line growth and bottom-line returns? Meanwhile, automating mundance tasks can free up IT and data teams to work on complex projects that rely on their technical expertise.

Above all, it’s essential for business and IT leaders to start every budgetary decision with data. CIOs and their teams require visibility into their tech spending to ensure efficiency and strategic alignment. Today’s ever-changing economic climate requires data and analytics to help organizations derive insights for significant competitive and operational advantages in customer acquisition, retention, and experience. Those organizations that will thrive beyond the rocky times will be the ones that regularly examine and benchmark investments across multiple cost views to facilitate smarter spending and better business outcomes.

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