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Understanding the Heartbeat of UK Business

Andy Crisp has been recognised by Information Age as one of the top 50 data leaders and influencers in the UK. Andy shares his thoughts on "Big Data"

With Big Data projected to be a $50.1 billion market this year, the list of top data leaders brings into focus the pace of innovation in this space. For me, Big Data is about "making sense of it all" to help businesses make the right decisions.

This isn't always to do with managing increasing volumes of data, but being smarter with what you've got, augmenting and aggregating data to fill the gaps. It can be as simple as matching your best customer data with supply data and gaining a fresh perspective.

We're seeing a significant investment in Big Data as demonstrated by the organisations on the Information Age Top 50. To be included is fantastic recognition of all the work we're doing and an opportunity to highlight how Dun & Bradstreet has been implementing master data management to achieve greater efficiencies and unlock even more value.

Taking a Modern Approach to Master Data Management

Gartner talks about the rise of the business moment, those moments which exploit the connection of people, business and things and allows companies to innovate for entirely new scenarios. As a result of our work in master data management, we're now able to unlock many more "business moments" for our clients.
 

Some of the biggest challenges are how to interpret the overwhelming quantities of data and ensuring the data is being collected, processed and stored in compliance with data privacy requirements. Over recent years Dun & Bradstreet has completely modernised its data management strategy to manage data in a more efficient and effective manner whilst addressing data privacy regulations. Through improvements to our master data management processes, Dun & Bradstreet UK now has a single view of a commercial entity across 20,000 data sets. We now manage the entire data lifecycle (discovery to purge); track commercial entities through the business lifecycle (from creation to closure) and record critical metadata (source & date stamping).

This has enabled us to continuously improve the accuracy, completeness and timeliness of the UK Commercial Database. We've had a 300% increase in our refresh rate, achieved greater efficiencies in database maintenance and redeployed resources onto higher value work to gain deeper insights into our data.

 

Getting Closer to the Heartbeat of an Organisation

Gartner talks about the rise of the business moment, those moments which exploit the connection of people, business and things and allows companies to innovate for entirely new scenarios. As a result of our work in master data management, we're now able to unlock many more "business moments" for our clients. By capturing "business activity" and "change signals" in our data we can monitor the heartbeat of a business as a movie rather than a series of photographs or snapshots in time. We can understand, across the billions of transactions and data feeds we receive on a daily basis, what's really happening within a business and why.

Information Age's inaugural list of data managers and leaders is an indication of how data and analytics have come out of the back office to take centre stage in business. It's great to see the level of attention that "Big Data" is getting and I'm looking forward to meeting my industry peers at the awards dinner in February; it's only by sharing experiences can we drive continuous improvements. We can expect to see even greater levels of innovation in this area to help us all become even smarter and find new ways of using data to inform decision making, deliver new insights and "make sense of it all".

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