Helping Management See the Story Hidden in the Data

by Jan 15, 2020

In most companies of any size, important strategic decisions are made by upper-echelon management figures. These individuals are entrusted with guiding the business through the ups and downs of the market which is subject to influences from a wide variety of sources. Choosing paths incorrectly can result in loss of income, prestige, and in extreme cases the total collapse of their enterprise.

Coordinating multiple corporate initiatives intended to improve the well-being of an organization can be challenging for the most experienced managers or CEOs. They must rely on the ability of their IT teams to provide them with the critical data with which to make informed choices regarding their business. This information needs to be in a format that can be fully understood before being used for its important purpose.

At times, there can be a disconnect between the purveyors and providers of the data used for corporate decision-making. Information gathered from a company’s databases may be in the form of statistics or numeric representations that make perfect sense to the technical teams who generate them. They are well-versed in the details of the business and can point out the important parts to management, wading through the data’s complexities.

The management figures who are relying on the data to make smart decisions may not be as technically adept at understanding the implications of pages of numbers. This is not to belittle their intelligence, but their role is different and demands a distinctive skillset. They are expected to make the right big-picture decisions based on all of the pertinent information at hand. Putting this information into the most easily digested form contributes to their ability to do the right thing for everyone in the company.

Saying it With Pictures

A large percentage of the human brain is involved in processing visual information and many people benefit from learning visually. This characteristic has undoubtedly contributed to our ability to perform the complex tasks that we take for granted as we navigate the world around us. We see things and understand them on a visceral level that goes beyond words.

Think about it. Would you usually opt for a photo or a detailed description of the image that was captured? In the majority of cases, the picture wins hands down. Our brains process it more quickly and thoroughly than the text, and it may leave an indelible impression that mere words never could hope to equal. Images conjure up more dreams and nightmares than stories or articles.

Some specific areas where a business can benefit from data visualization include:

  • Understanding customer trends is key to remaining competitive but can be difficult if not impossible without data visualization tools. Big data, social media, and the Internet of Things all contribute huge quantities of information that need to be considered when making marketing or sales decisions. Informative graphs and dashboards help bring out the most salient points in this flood of data.

  • Financial management is another area of business that can take advantage of visualizations. They can provide a vehicle to better understand the numbers that indicate the health or lack thereof of a company’s financial state. Pages of statistics and calculations can be represented in easily understood visualizations that pinpoint potential problems or identify possible windfalls.

  • Using data resources to their fullest potential is virtually impossible without visualization. Big data implies that large amounts of information need to be gathered and put together in innovative ways that may lead to identifying methods to improve the business, both internally and externally. Visualizations allow data scientists to creatively present their findings in ways that a general audience can appreciate and use.

A Tool to Bring Your Data to Life

Most companies employ a multiple-platform database environment from which they generate the information that runs their business. Using different tools to create visualizations from the associated databases can be challenging for your teams. Creating similar charts and dashboards from related data stored in different databases can be impossible at times.

Aqua Data Studio is a comprehensive database integrated development environment that supports over 30 of the most widely-used platforms. This includes SQL Server, MySQL, Sybase, and IBM Db2, whether they are housed in an on-premises data center or the cloud. It enables you to build customizable two and three-dimensional charts that are updated in realtime. Create dashboards with the tool that keeps everyone instantly informed of changes that affect your business.

With Aqua Data Studio it is possible to take the most complex set of statistics and create the story necessary to drive home the underlying points to everyone in the organization. This facilitates the decisions made with the data and allows non-technical individuals a path to understanding the complex information at their disposal. Every picture tells a story, and with Aqua Data Studio you can be sure yours is heard by those who need to hear it.