In 2022, DataCon returned to the Western Cape with its first in-person event since the start of the pandemic.

In 2022, DataCon returned to the Western Cape with its first in-person event since the start of the pandemic. Organised by market intelligence, advisory and events company, Corinium, DataCon is one of the leading events in the region focused on cutting-edge data and analytics leaders who are aligning data strategy with digital transformation and spearheading a data-driven culture in their business. Nicky Brand from Wunderman Thompson Data reports back.

A seat at the business table for data and analytics

Datacon delivered a host of thought-provoking speakers, each pushing the envelope on ideas for deriving real business value from data and highlighting the powerful impact of data on business strategy and growth. They also, however, advocated passionately for keeping people in the loop, especially when it comes to following ethical data practices.

From the discussions over the two days of the conference, it is clear that data and analytics teams want a seat at the table. In today’s data-driven universe, it seems they might get it. With a strong call for a new type of leader, one that is both business and technically savvy, the conference reiterated that data strategy is fundamental to the success of nearly any business initiative.

Data is great, but strategy is better

Steven Sinofsky

Former President of the Windows Division at Microsoft

A new type of leader suggests a new type of workforce. In the past, data management and analysis were relegated to a dark corner of the office. Today, data and analytics is a team sport and everyone from across the business needs to get involved. This means that data literacy is a priority for leading businesses. Teams and individuals alike should be fast-tracked in building data knowledge, establishing a shared data language and learning to extract the maximum value from data and its insights.

Data is not a product – it’s a solution

Eugene Ras

Head of Data & Analytics - Distell

This does not mean staring at redundant diagnostic reports month after month, year after year, but rather using data to develop a clear understanding of key business problems as well as using the data to drive the right actions to deliver the desired business and customer value.

Data strategies are living organisms

Munye Nyikavaranda

Group Executive Head: Digital Analytics & Marketing Technology – Multichoice

In a digital society, everything is constantly changing and evolving. New information becomes known, new technologies are deployed, new business goals are surfaced and what is value today, may not be value tomorrow. As such, the data strategy must be reviewed on a regular basis – every three to six months in some instances.

We need to build the bridge while we walk on it

Maritza Curry

Head of Data - RCS

Today’s operating models result in data being stale by the time it is used to inform strategies. The most important trick data and analytics needs to pull off is accelerating insights and closing the gap between data and decision-making to deliver value that is timeous and impactful.

The key questions to ask:

  • How do we organise data teams from across the organisation to shorten the time between insights and actions?
  • How do we collect, organise and store our data to increase accessibility and decrease processing in a compliant and ethical way?
  • How do we support demand for real-time information and insights in an agile fashion that ensures the data strategy remains aligned to the business strategy?

You may be asking, can technology help? If the conversations around data warehouses, data lakes, lake houses and data fabrics were anything to go by, then, yes, absolutely. But which one is right for you? Well, that just depends on your business and data strategy. That’s where Wunderman Thompson can help. Get in touch with us and we’ll help to demystify the options for you.

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