Starvation Diet: Front-Line Workers Lack Access To Data

Front-line employees are deprive of analytics data, especially in the U.S., according to 2020 Global State Of Enterprise Analytics,  a study by MicroStrategy.

Of companies polled worldwide, 52% give free access to data and analytics to front-line workers. Yet their bosses can view it--76% of executives and 81% of management teams have access.

“Shockingly, when it comes to making data-driven decisions, the majority of the workforce is still winging it,” states Marge Breya, senior executive vice president and chief marketing officer, MicroStrategy Incorporated.

The U.S. is the “laggard” in giving access to the front-liners — only 44% have it. But 81% of the top executives and management teams have it.

In contrast, 58% of those in the trenches in Brazil and Germany can view data. So can 51% of those in Japan and 48% in the UK.

Lack of access leads to major productivity issues.

“Today’s reality is that for 60% of insights-starved employees, it takes hours or days to get the information they need to make a data- driven decision; only 3% can do it in seconds.”



How can companies solve this problem?

Of those polled, 48% say the best way to dole out access is to embed analytics right into email, search, etc. This would allow employees to “hover over a hyperlink and get information about companies, customers, and more,” the study notes.

Actual usage figures more or less support that belief. Of global companies, 52% in Brazil embed their analytics into their email and/or other popular business tools, as do 51% in Japan, 50% in the UK and 50% in the U.S. The laggard here is Germany, although that might be due to privacy issues.

Indeed, privacy is the leading barrier to more effective use of data and analytics:

  • Data privacy and security concerns — 43%
  • Access to data is limited across the organization — 29%
  • Our organization lacks the correct talent to make the best use of our data — 27%
  • Lack of training — 27%
  • Our organization lacks an analytics strategy — 25%
  • The current solution is too complicated — 25%
  • Tools are not intuitive or convenient — 24%
  • There is no centralized tool used for capturing and analyzing data — 21%
  • Our organization lacks the proper technology — 21%
  • Analytics used is not a key focus for the organization — 18%

On a positive note, 79% of large enterprises and 60% of small firms are planning to invest more in analytics testimony. And 75% of the bigger companies and 60% of the smaller ones will invest in talent. Overall, 94% believe analytics is important.

Among users, analytics is being integrated in these ways:

  • Advanced and predictive analytics — 59%
  • Analytics embedded in other applications — 47%
  • Personalized distribution of analytics via email, collaboration tools — 47%
  • Mobile activity apps — 41%
  • KIPs presented on screens around the office — 39%
  • Data lakes/Hadoop — 31$
  • None of the above — 2%

Meanwhile, companies are using data and analytics for these purposes:

  • To drive process and cost efficiency — 53%
  • To drive strategy and change — 53%
  • To analyze workplace and workforce productivity — 49%
  • To manage risk — 48%
  • To develop new products and service — 45%
  • To attain and retain customers — 45%
  • To analyze how current products and services are used — 44%
  • To monitor and improve financial performance  — 44% 
  • To monitor the market — 43%
  • To stay ahead of the competition — 43%


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