This year, most business leaders across the globe have seen their industries upended as the spread of COVID-19 has impacted budgets, priorities, processes and more. As the pandemic progresses, business leaders have acknowledged that data has become more essential than ever before and is necessary to determine and progress upon the path to recovery.
Today, we released the results
of our new global survey which we worked in partnership with independent market research firm Vanson Bourne to complete. By showcasing the results of the survey, we aim to reveal how business leaders across several regions are changing the way they think about data -- their trust in it, the role it plays in a post-pandemic recovery, and the importance of data to overall business strategy.
Trust in Data
The worldwide scramble to understand and track the spread of COVID-19 resulted in critical data gaffes, including inaccurate results and misdrawn conclusions. Businesses looked on as data was inconclusive, misunderstood and even abused, unable to gain control.
These data frustrations ultimately buoyed increased skepticism in data’s trustworthiness among the enterprise. According to the findings on this topic:
Data Is Key to Recovery
- 77% of global business leaders say data accuracy is under greater scrutiny within their organization due to how data was used in relation to COVID-19. China, at 93%, was most concerned about the accuracy of their data, followed by Germany (80%) and the US (77%).
- While 53% of business leaders overall admit trust in data was challenged due to COVID-19 data follies, there is a notable disparity in sentiment when comparing the US (60%) and the UK (28%).
- Nearly half (47%) of business leaders agree decision-making is being hampered amid the current COVID-19 crisis due to lack of cloud presence, with 66% of respondents in China feeling the strain.
Although public data missteps and resulting scrutiny have, in many cases, increased the challenges around data use in the enterprise, leaders have ultimately recognized the key role that scalable, trustworthy data in the cloud plays in business recovery. From enabling a more comprehensive understanding of the changing landscape to generating dependable predictions for how demand will shift, we’ll likely come to see the pandemic as the inflection point for when data’s importance was truly realized within the enterprise. The survey further reveals that:
Data Is Strategic to Our Future
- 82% of business leaders are now accelerating decisions to move data and key business functions to the cloud as a direct result of the pandemic.
- According to roughly 9 out of 10 (91%) respondents, data’s importance within organizations has skyrocketed ever since the onset of COVID-19.
- Out of the five countries surveyed, China was most focused on the cloud, with 99% of business leaders confirming plans to expedite their move to the cloud, while 59% of business leaders in the UK appeared skeptical.
COVID-19 has caused vast disruptions across the business landscape and opened many IT decision makers’ eyes to the key role it will play in recovery. In efforts to recover from this crisis as well as predict and prepare for future disruptions, leaders have changed their idea of data from “just another technology solution” to a fundamental, strategic asset and business priority. Businesses are also pivoting to reflect the realization that data is core to how they operate. For example, ensuring data is easily accessible across departments and that it’s front and center when explaining the “why” of any business decision. Survey findings are indicative of this emerging sentiment:
- 88% of executives view data as a strategic asset to their business, while 94% agree data is an essential asset and more importantly, key to recovery and the path moving forward.
- Global response about how data will inform future efforts was nearly unanimous, with China (100%) being the biggest advocates of data and its role in recovery, followed by the US (97%), Germany and Japan at 93% and then France and the UK at 92%.
Overall, the survey findings suggest that business leaders across several countries and industries have experienced pandemic-induced disruptions to their respective markets. As organizations quickly tried to better understand and predict the spread of the virus (as well as its impacts on business), a number of resulting data missteps increased top-down scrutiny of how trustworthy data can be when determining, solving and predicting problems.
However, in an effort to weather the storm, enterprises have realized that data -- especially when located in the cloud, which can improve the agility and flexibility of data analytics -- is key to their recovery. Going forward, more business leaders now recognize that data should be treated as a priority and a strategic asset in achieving success and remaining competitive.
Some Teradata customers have already achieved this mindset and are partnering with us to make it a reality. In the healthcare domain, we are helping one of the leading pharmaceutical companies better prepare for a future built on collaboration and shared information by creating a powerful data backbone to unify their global labs. This accelerates their digital research by 10% -- enabling them to unearth viable therapies, faster -- resulting in $500 million annual profit.
We’ve also created a COVID-19 Resiliency Dashboard
to help our customers across every industry – from Healthcare, Communications, Media & Entertainment to Oil & Gas, Banking, and Retail -- leverage data to navigate the many challenges the pandemic has imposed on their business. This business-centric, execution-focused tool combines critical, pre-loaded, publicly available U.S. data sources with a customer’s own data so they can get a better, more comprehensive understanding of their business and the factors that are impacting both customers and employees.
We initially built this free offering for our own response purposes, but quickly realized that we could actively help our customers plot their way through this pandemic and, perhaps more importantly, prepare them for what’s next.
As we move through and on from the pandemic, businesses need to prioritize data as highly as revenue, customer experience and profitability to ensure they are best prepared for whatever 2021 and beyond has in store. Companies that embrace a data-first mentality
won’t just rebuild; they’ll completely reimagine their business. In doing so, they’ll invest in and leverage unified data ecosystems, enabling advanced analytics to better understand their market, their business and their customers. This insight will allow them to create new and innovative sources of revenue. They won’t JUST recover, they’ll thrive. In that sense, data won’t just be a critical component of doing business as usual, it will likely become these companies' most important asset.
About the survey:
In September 2020, Teradata commissioned independent market research company Vanson Bourne to conduct a quantitative research study of IT decision makers across the U.S., UK, France, Germany, China and Japan. Respondents were from organizations with 1,000 employees or more, and with a global annual revenue of more than $250 million, within private sectors including financial services and IT, technology and telecoms. Interviews were conducted online using a rigorous multi-level screening process to ensure that only suitable candidates were given the opportunity to participate.