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How to start an analytics journey

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The words “data”, “analytics” and “algorithms” are being heard across organizations. Boards are prompting companies to go digital and use analytics for decision making. Even the government is planning to use analytics in its functioning. For instance, the chief minister of Andhra Pradesh tracks the progress of key initiatives in his state through descriptive analytics on a visual dashboard.

So how exactly does one kick-start an analytics journey in an organization?

Organizations that use data effectively focus on the business problems they want to solve using analytics and the decisions that need to be taken with the help of such data. Thus, the two key operating words are “data” and “decisions”.

The Gartner Framework on Analytics is a good reference to begin the analytics journey. It shows how data is at the root of all decision making and, based on the quantum of human input involved in decisions, one can classify the different stages of analytics as descriptive, diagnostic, predictive and prescriptive. Further, once the decision is acted upon, more data is generated which is fed back into the database and used in the model.

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