data culture

(Photo by PAUL FAITH / AFP)

The data culture will determine the future of businesses

The data culture continues to go strong as organizations make their way into the last month of 2021 and prepare to usher in the new year. For many, 2021 was still a year of uncertainties as the pandemic continues to disrupt plans, especially for companies that hoped to have their employees back in offices.

Nevertheless, most businesses have now accepted the reality. Hybrid work and remote work is the future and there is nothing much they can do about it but embrace it. Organizations are opening up their imaginations to new and unexpected ways of solving workplace challenges, and it is currently an opportune moment for leaders to commit to data-driven strategies for greater agility.

According to Accenture’s Future of Work Study 2021 study, 83% of workers surveyed around the world say a hybrid working model would be optimal. In fact, 63% of high-growth organizations have enabled productivity anywhere in workforce models. And this model can only work if the organization believes and practices a data-first culture.

For JY Pook, Senior Vice President and General Manager for the Asia Pacific and Japan at Tableau, the data culture is something that will be determining the future. And in 2022, Pook believes the most successful businesses in a work-from-anywhere world will be the ones that have adapted quickly to change.  Here are his predictions for businesses in 2022.

Businesses that will emerge stronger in a work-from-anywhere world are the ones that are adaptable to change.

Adapting to new ways of working and communicating with a remote workforce has opened up organizations’ imaginations to new and unexpected ways of solving workplace challenges. A recent YouGov survey commissioned by Tableau revealed that business leaders in the region (Australia, Japan, and Singapore) who were deliberate in increasing their data use during the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic, were more than twice as likely to report positive changes in workplace decision making and communication than those that hadn’t. The intentional use of data can help organizations stay agile and connect with today’s distributed workforce.

Data-driven conversations will deliver business outcomes in today’s digital headquarters  

Offices have shifted online to become digital HQs of their own. Yet even as working environments transition online, they need to be seamlessly integrated to support the way people naturally collaborate. This is why Tableau recently embedded powerful analytics capabilities directly into workplace collaboration tool Slack to make data more actionable, accessible, and intelligent. As more businesses embrace the digital HQ model, Tableau foresees increased innovation around how analytics is integrated into everyday work tools to help people engage with data.

Building a data culture will become a business imperative

The uncertainty created by the Covid-19 pandemic has created an opportune moment for leaders to commit to data-driven strategies for greater agility. This is why an organization-wide data culture is important – it is about the behaviors of people who value, practice, and encourage the use of data. It requires organizations to have a culture underpinned by data – an understanding that data needs to be in the hands of everyone in the organization. Businesses need to have the following elements in place:

  • Commitment – where data is treated as a key strategic asset and people are committed to realizing value from that asset. Leaders need to take the first step and lead by example
  • Trust – having both trusts from leadership and transparent access to governed, accurate data, results in greater employee responsibility and accountability for the information used and needed
  • Talent – recognize and value data skills as part of how organizations recruit, develop, and retain talent
  • Sharing – creating environments such as internal communities, where people share and support one another to achieve common goals
  • Mindset – encouraging curiosity through exploration and even failure with data

With that said, the business outlook for 2022 is still very broad and open. But one thing is for certain, organizations have already had two years to experience change and get used to hybrid and remote working models. If they are still uncertain about it, they really need to start rethinking their business strategies.