July 17, 2017

In Major League Baseball, it’s a whole new ball game. Ever since the movie Money Ball demonstrated the value of using advanced data analytics, the game has changed. Using big data has proven to help MLB teams succeed.

Of course, statistics have always been a part of baseball, but until the last few years, stats were still recorded in the traditional way through observation. Many decisions were made based on limited data. Now 7TB of data can be gathered from a single MLB baseball game.

Unfortunately, in many large companies today, many high-level decisions are still made with limited information. Why? It’s not for lack of data. It’s about the ability to leverage the enormous amount of data available.

But extracting valuable insight from big data can be a huge challenge. In many companies the information needed is simply too difficult to obtain. Their large information systems are not agile enough to quickly create ad hoc reports or answer unusual questions. It may take weeks to explain a single change in product sales or identify a key performance indicator.

Even when the effort is taken to compile the data, it might be too late to fix a problem or take advantage of an opportunity. Or the figures may not be reliable as the data is pulled from many different databases and ERP systems. Which means many questions are never even asked.

Sound familiar?

If so, you’re often flying blind. But you still need to make decisions. And that means you’re going to have to rely on your gut. And as baseball has shown, your gut is not as reliable as unbiased data.

So you have to decide. Continue to blindly swing away and hope to compete? Or improve your visibility. However, it’s not easy to embrace new solutions and rely less on old ones like Excel. Baseball experts relied on the same statistical approaches for over 100 years. Change isn’t easy.

But like baseball, there are new and better ways for business to access and analyze financial data. There are many cutting edge Corporate Performance Management (CPM) solutions out there, but some simply outperform the rest. You need a CPM that pulls your data into one single source of the truth – so you can rely on it. One that allows you to quickly and easily answer any question – slice and dice the data any way you want.

A CPM solution that’s easy to learn so everyone can use it, but isolated from your other data so no one can break it. One that allows you to dig down to a granular level to reveal problems and uncover opportunities. A solution that unlocks your data so you can unleash your company’s performance and help you win.

When Moneyball revealed the benefits of big data six years ago, many teams were still slow to adopt. Some were skeptics thought it was too unconventional. Not anymore. The Chicago Cubs overcame a 108-year drought by using big data analytics. In fact, the Cubs World Series win last year is considered proof that big data analytics in baseball is here to stay.

The same thing is happening in the business world. But you can’t win sitting on the bench.

Are you ready to step up to the plate?