The business windfalls of data intelligence integration

Is the data integration journey really worth the investment and operational overhaul it would necessitate for most enterprises to undertake?
6 October 2022

It’s the age of information, especially for businesses which can use it to optimize efficiencies and drive forward-looking decision-making. Data integration into various operational capacities keeps a steady stream of insights percolating to push continuous growth, and inform costs and operational oversight.

For IT teams, the volume(s) of data coming through the integration pipeline can place greater demands on their time and resources to manage, but the value of data findings to enable innovation and business resilience within the organization can ultimately be beneficial to the bottom line, as illustrated in a new study, the Economic Impact of Data Innovation 2023, released by Splunk in collaboration with the Enterprise Strategy Group.

The amount of data produced and expected to be consumed, (predicted to be a mind-boggling 94 zettabytes of data by the end of 2022) is causing massive headaches for businesses. The global survey studied feedback from 2,000 IT, security, and business leaders throughout the United States, United Kingdom, New Zealand, Australia, Singapore, Japan, France, Germany, and India to better understand how data integration is being operationalized and monetized to reap economic gains.

Is it worth the effort?

Is the data integration journey really worth the investment and operational overhaul it would need for most enterprises to undertake? According to the Economic Impact report, the average business witnessed a 9.5% increase in gross profits, with the leaders notifying that the data-mature businesses launched an average of nine new products annually, in contrast with other organizations that released an average of just three new products per year.

More interestingly, companies with higher levels of data integration were applying it to wider areas of the business such as the sales, marketing and customer servicing funnels, contributing to a higher customer retention value, 19% more than beginner firms just starting out integrating data into their operations. Crucially when quantifying the economic value that insights bring, data integration leaders are nearly six times more likely to say their organization makes better operational decisions than competitors, most of the time.

Companies on the mature end of the data integration curve are nearly three times (2.9x) more likely to beat the competition when releasing a new product to market, and have double the chance to surpass financial benchmarks with the aid of innovative data value. Information analysis breeds confidence in the workforce of data integration leaders too: IT and business people surveyed are 4.5 times more likely to believe their firm is in a strong position to stand out and flourish in their competitive spaces over the next few years.

Data innovation-driven outfits feel more pressure than their less data-mature rivals, but with that pressure also comes higher degrees of achievement. Two-thirds (67%) of data integration pacesetters report feeling a high degree of pressure, compared to just 41% of intermediate data-mature companies and a paltry 15% of beginners.

The benefit of data-maturity

“I think what was really interesting was just how impactful some of the metrics were around the leaders—or the data-savvy—versus the ones that are just starting out,” commented Ammar Maraqa, Chief Strategy Officer at Splunk. “There’s real financial impact or financial benefit, and it’s both on the top line and the bottom line.”

When it comes to a focused drive to enhance performance and increase profit, the report makes clear that navigating the unique challenges and even predicting the most advisable course of action is significantly improved by analysis-driven insights integrated across the business.

“Data-driven innovation gives you a massive edge,” noted Maraqa. “Organizations that prioritize investments in collecting and using their data have full visibility into their digital systems and business performance, which makes it easier to adapt and respond to disruptions, security threats and changing market conditions.”