What is data democracy?

I touched on this idea in my last blog (check it here for more) but how accessible is the data in your company?

Recently, I took part in a mini elevator pitch session and one of the points that resonated with the audience – who are not in our sector – was that Mapcite encourages data interaction at the point of use.

Doesn’t that show something?

How many companies have a more open policy on data use?

And before you start to think about ‘GDPR’, I don’t mean data to share externally, I just mean data within the business.

Let me ask a question; how many of you have attended a quarterly town hall and had graphs and charts thrown at you?

What happened the week after that? Or the month after? Did you ever see that information again?

I’ll bet I can guess when you next saw it – at the next quarterly town hall!

It doesn’t make sense.

These are metrics born out of KPI data the business holds. If this is the performance measure – why aren’t employees trusted with it on a frequent basis?

For me, this speaks to upskilling and empowerment of the workforce, surely both forces of tremendous benefit to any company?

There has been a move towards self-service across several facets in business; holiday requests, training programmes, goal setting.

Why not data?

To consider an example, and as it’s what Mapcite is all about, let’s use location data.

One of the very first use cases for Mapcite was for a sales director who wanted to track his team’s routes each day, the main purpose to point out how many potential customers they missed.

In a more democratised way, using that same example, what if the entire sales team could see the routes and calls of their colleagues? If Sales Person A in the north was smashing their target, did it correlate to how they approached their territory? Could Sales Person B or C evaluate their performance through this lens? Would best practice trends emerge?

Take another example from healthcare. A partner of ours has mapped each treatment location and its services. When a call centre operator has a patient query, they can use filters to quickly find the nearest, appropriate facility. This is data democracy in action, distributed at point of use to maximise efficiency.

There will be plenty of examples where such visualisation and analysis empowers employees for good. Let’s not keep it all locked away, let’s trust teams to use it, to drive engagement, and power performance and realise the data’s full potential.