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What is data democratization?

Jordyn Tetler

With a large number of employees still working remotely and customers shopping online, digital transformation has become essential. Today, businesses are seeking ways to effectively operate in a new age, digital environment. Enter data democratization.

What is data democratization?

Data democratization is defined as the process of making data and insights accessible to a wider range of roles within a business.

Why is it important?

Data democratization is important for several reasons. Not only does it help mitigate the impact of the pandemic, but it can help secure your business’s future success. 

Our latest research found that 87 percent of businesses say data insight is essential to managing the customer experience and operational efficiency in a digital environment. What’s more, nine out of ten say data democratization is more important than ever with large numbers of employees working remotely.

It’s no secret that the new normal is here to stay, and by democratizing your data you can feel confident your employees are equipped with the insights they need to effectively perform their job, even while remote. 

Furthermore, democratizing your data today means making sure your business is ready for tomorrow. Why? A wider range of roles having access to high-quality insights can help with:

• Better and faster decision-making
• Exceptional customer experience
• Improved operational efficiency
• Better security or reduced risk
• And, way more!

4 ways to share data insights

Our study uncovered 57 percent of business leaders say they are already underway with data democratization. For data democratization to work, you need to get data into the hands of more employees sitting in a variety of roles. Here’s how businesses are sharing data with their team:

1. Insights are provided by leadership.
2. Reports are generated at specific times.
3. End users have direct access to business intelligence or analytics tools.
4. Leaders host staff-wide meetings to distribute data intelligence.

The level of effectiveness of these practices vary. It’s important to think about the culture of your business, the resources available, and the best way your people consume important information.

4 best practices for data democratization

Once data democratization is underway, it’s important to consider how your employees will access data and the quality of insights being leveraged. Here are some essential steps:

1. Implement better technology.
2. Be more transparent with data insights.
3. Create trust in data quality.
4. Establish a data literacy program.

Fifty percent of business leaders we surveyed already have a data literacy program underway. Data literacy is the ability to read, write, and argue with data—which is a key component of establishing data democratization and essential to boosting your employees’ data confidence.

With everyone still at home—working, learning, and shopping online—now is the time to get more employees access to high-quality data. Data democratization is your key to unlocking digital transformation and, ultimately, a data-driven culture.

We spoke with more than 500 data practitioners to understand what their journey is to a data-driven culture, and why it's key to organizational success. 

Get the report now