Analytics Projects: Getting Started With The Right Assets
As an analytics professional, there are lots of assets and resources at your fingertips as you begin new analytics projects. Analytics assets include not only data but also the experts that you work with every day. With so many options, it can be difficult to find a place to begin or even the correct person to talk to when beginning analytics projects. The right questions will help you narrow down the options. Data sources are considered the most common analytics asset. Yet, each data source has its own nuances. Therefore it is critical to understand what you are working with for any analytics project.
These questions will quickly guide you to the right decision:
- Where was it sourced?
- Do you need to interact with or update the data, or just be able to view it?
- What should useful reporting look like?
- Who should I ask for help?
Where was the data sourced?
Before you can analyze any data you need to first determine exactly what data you have available that could be used in the data analytics project. How many data sources do you have? What format is this data in? Is there market or competitive data available that you can also use? For example, a company might have three different internal databases: data that includes sales with date and location; firmographic data including name, company name, industry and address; and a client list that includes name, company name, industry and address. But two of these databases might be in spreadsheet format, while the third resides in an accounting system.
Do you need to interact with or update the data, or just be able to view it?
Your answer to this question will result in different requirements. For example, if your data analysis project results in a map of competitor locations, do you just need to be able to see this map? Do you want your sales team to be able to click on something and update this information in real time? Do your managers want to drill down into the details of each competitor location?
How do you want to consume the data analytics project results? What should useful reporting look like?
There are many ways to synthesize data. Some projects call for an Excel spreadsheet while others require a PowerPoint presentation explaining the results and action-plans to stakeholders.
However, a growing number of data analytics projects are conjured into a visualization or a dashboard to be shared with a greater number of colleagues. Propagating these dashboards raise additional considerations when sharing outside of your analytics projects. Once a dashboard is emailed to a colleague or client, it can generate unexpected questions that are directed back to the data team. It is important to consider how these dashboards are shared. An online portal with a dashboard, with all of the important data pulled into one easy-to access file is the ideal approach. And when doing so consider, whether all personnel should have access to the same data, or is some level of data security be required prior to accessing the dashboard.
Sharing Is Caring
As you consider these questions in your data analytics projects, be sure to communicate with your colleagues. They are excellent resources to help guide you on the right path. They may have even performed a similar task. In general, the ability to access multiple resources will take you farther than anything else. Finally, become one of those great resources by sharing what you learn in project. Never underestimate the multitude of great resources now available to us in the analytical community.
See how you can easily find and collaborate on the perfect assets for your data analytics project in Neebo. By adding and utilizing tagging assets within Neebo’s Virtual Analytics Hub, your entire team will build and share great data assets all from one place.