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Great discussion. Thanks for all who joined us.

Blogger

At Chevron -- look for courage in analytics personnel. That's an interesting trait to look for!

Blogger

I wonder how the unbiased approach Shawn is discussing to analytics compares with the skepticism Tom discussed in the previous Webinar.

Blogger

This discussion of accountability and fudging of numbers reminds me of the ethics question Bryan Beverly raised in his blog from last week

Blogger

At KBB, first question is "has analytics seen this?" That's huge!

Blogger

See you, Michael. Thanks so much for joining us!

Blogger

I've got to sign off - thanks for this timely and insightful conversation!

Any good analytics project has to start w/ good clean data and single version of the truth.

Blogger

Push back to the business. Good point.

Blogger

Shawn, I think when we talk about analytics talent crunch, it's more so on the starting level than the highest levels that would feed into a CAO type of role. That type of role also can come from other business areas, like CIO or CMO

Blogger

In other words, is it surprising there are not more CIO?

Blogger

Beth. My question is whether there seem to still be so few mean a much longer journey ahead for analytics?

Blogger

You have to own the forecast, as Hushman says, for consistency and credibility.

Blogger

Sounds like a logical suggestion, Michael.

Blogger

@Shawn -- I don't understand the question. Why would the need for someone in the C suite being responsible for analytics bode poorly for analytics? I see the opposite as being true.

Blogger

Business analysts abound - it may be an idea to recruit one or two and attach them to the one analytics guru - just to shadow him/her for a while and learn the ropes, then delegage some tasks, then spin them off as sub-gurus

makes sense KBB would want to see more use of visualization for easier viewing it's pricing models

Blogger

Crucial but does this bode poorly for analytics, I wonder?

Blogger

two directions analytics going -- analytics for human consumption. visual for that. but other side is getting more embedded with analytics, machine to machine. so that'd be a waste to put up visuals for that. but for human side need visuals

Blogger

Chief strategist. Chief intelligence officer, etc. -- maybe not called by "analytics' name but panelists agree the role is crucial.

Blogger

Davenport said there'd be 15 by end of 2011. But he's found maybe one. But still says companies need that role.

Blogger

Chief analytics officer -- do we need one?

Blogger

Michael, yes -- traditional mentoring. But one of the challenges is some organizations are just getting start or just growing departments from a body of one. So that sort of tiered learning might not be available.

Blogger

This is an interesting point being made now. That the key is to creating incentives for more analytical decisions.

Blogger

If you build in a tiered hierarchy in that part of the organization, Beth, you can have 2nd-years mentor 1st-years, etc

Just as recruitment is going to be a big challenge, so is retention. An important point from Tom.

Blogger

Plotting  a career path -- do you go management route? Or those who just want to do analytics? That's fine, but still need to make sure they still have challenges.

Blogger

How do you make your talent as smart as those in the market they're going to square off against. That advice from Blanchard is good.

Blogger

Right, Beth. More to it than that.

Blogger

Shawn brings up the importance of executive sponsorship again. Key to this whole thing, I think.

Blogger

Executive sponsorship is not somebody saying, ya, we want that -- make it happen. 

Blogger

Mentoring while building analytic talent is tricky. Hushman says. 

Blogger

Nocker brings IT perspective. And clearly can talk to the business, and understands analytics. So she'd be the perfect director for a Center of Excellence!

 

Blogger

There is  way to do it, and at scale. Accenture has a practice specifically for building analytics talent -- so that's a great sign of progress, Davenport says. Agreed!

Blogger

Technical, functional, and business acumen.

Blogger

How do you allocate budget. What skills and competency do you need? 

Blogger

Blanchard -- interesting point!

Blogger

Analytics not a popular piece of MBA programs historically. But now starting to weave back in. BUt good thing about programs like NC State's Master of Analytics is that pulls students from all over the school.

Blogger

Michael, exactly! Apply an analytical approach to determining whether analytics is effective.

Blogger

It goes to the 'center of excellence' idea

NC State program is commonly cited, Davenport points out -- BUT, but, but, only turning out about 40 grads/year. That's an interesting stat. Won't barely address the impending shortage of analytic talent.

Blogger

Right, Beth - i mean the sales person should use analytics to drive his/her activities over that period, then compare it against a similar period without analytics

Ha! A good idea, Michael. And that's what is being said on the panel right now. Pair analytics with those who know the business.

Blogger

Michael -- to what business aim, though. Analytics for the sake of running some models doesn't do anybody any good. They have to have defined business challenge before heading down that partnership. Oh, and don't forget IT. Got to be in there, too.

Blogger

I'm thinking it may be an idea to pair an analytics expert with a sales expert and let them run with some models over a 3-month or 6-month period, then chart and communicate their experience. if they haven't killed one another first.

Hushman, whatever childhood dreams he has had, is a smart guy. I've interviewed him and he really knows his stuff. 

Blogger

But if you go back to the previous example, Beth, where they can point to a 4x increase in profits, that's a compelling number

Terry -- it shouldn't. But you know as well as anybody that some enterprise applications and IT technologies are much more difficult to determine ROI for than others. 

Blogger

Sounds like a left brain/right brain professional

Blogger

Hushman -- went from engineering, to economics and being able to apply analytics to human behavior

Blogger

Beth. Yea. Like that one too.

Blogger

@Beth: That's one of the few dreams I've never had

Blogger

Speaking about analytics as a function of ROI... why should analytics be immune from the same rules defining any other business tool we use or buy?

Blogger

Analytics should be calculated by ROI. Shouldn't everything in business this way. Again, is this really limited to analytics?

Blogger

Has anyone EVER laid in bed in night and dreamed of being an analytics expert?

Blogger

Shawn, true, but it's companies have to apply real effort to the customer focus from an analytics focus. It sounds obvious, but that's not how they've built up their processes over the years so it's not easy whatsoever.

Blogger

The bottom line. How will data analytics change our outcome?

Blogger

Nocker makes great point -- they might understand the math, but don't know how to see the value. Senior execs want projected ROI that they can take to bank and that's not easy.

Blogger

We can step back and peel back essence of analytical organizations. But what Accenture finds with clients if what can we do differently? How can analytics help? But weakness around one or two things that will be real differentiator. Not linking analytics that could be brought to that problem -- that thing that can catapult the business.

Blogger

Beth. But flipping the fovus from product to customer is hardly the perview of analytics alone. This is a general focus in business, whether we're talking about analytics or not.

Blogger

I like, from Davenport, "cultivate your sponsor."

Blogger

Companies need to flip focus from product to customer. 

Blogger

Interesting story about EMC, not being so analytical in nature historically. 

Blogger

I think the idea of looking at increasing productivity, not just improving efficiency, is a great direction for the conversation.

Blogger

Point solutions can be good, but Davenport urges people to find senior executive to sheperd analytics along. 

Blogger

If you can point to some significant wins -- even short-term -- and then publicize them throughout the company, you can shift the culture

Michael -- Right you bring up a critical point. IT, the analytics team, and the business certainly need to work well together for utmost benefit

Blogger

Michael. I suspect these companies, as Stacy Blanchard at Accenture explains, are likely companies with analytics built into their DNA.

Blogger

But part and parcel of the culture question is the speed question. If I need to file a request with IT so they can run some models or queries and it takes a couple of days, I'm not going to see tremendous value there.

I'd imagine online retailers like Zappos and Red Envelope have detailed analytics, too.

Incredible, the many complexities -- culture, intuition, etc. - incorporated into the process.

Prospector

Early adopters of analytics -- Tesca, Harrahs, etc. Don't lose your "reader." 

Blogger

Where do I focus my analytical targets? 

Blogger

There's an interesting point Stacy Blanchard makes about building analytics into the DNA of a company. Interesting point for companies starting out.

Blogger

If you're analytics driving or working with team on, case study unto itself -- why intuition weighted differntly than you think. Adds validity to analytics. 

Blogger

Front and center, analytics in their DNA. Anybody have good examples? Blanchard cites eBay. I'd throw in other online companies of that ilk, like Amazon and Google.

Blogger

Blanchard mentiones joint Accenture/SAS white paper -- I'll be sure to grab and report back on that!

Blogger

Leadership, technology and processes, believes, attitudes, etc. -- they're all culture.

Blogger

Blanchard raises a good point -- can you quantify culture? Interesting question.

Blogger

Particularly changing executive mindset. But we do need topdown stakeholder buyin as she says. But also need from the bottomup understanding of the data and how to use it.

Blogger

Beth. I wonder if another issue, also mentioned by the panel, is the age of the company important? Older companies with more experience and more data?

Blogger

As Nocker points out, your company might understand they need analytics but don't know how to change their mindsets. That must be a challenge for many, many companies.

Blogger

I agree with Davenport -- it's not surprising that analytics is a big journey for executives. 25 year journey in Partners Healthcare as one example! Get EHR in place, change doctor's culture, etc.

Blogger

Good perspective from SAS insider, seeing companies shift to top-line focus rather than squeezing out dollars from the bottom line

Blogger

So that was a cool example. (Not to comforting from a consumer perspective, however).!

 

Blogger

Cost received four times. Now that's a real time benefit.

Blogger

KBB's Hushman has his own example. Able to price discriminate on individuals coming to this company for a loan (prior to him joining KBB). Built an elasticity model on how to adjust its rate offers based on what customer came to. Profits increased over 4X as a result, in real time. Productionalized model, existing in real time.

Blogger

Have to get deeper into business challenges, asking the right questions -- but I'd like to hear a real example of a company's success story.

Blogger

Hi Michael. Glad to have you!

Blogger

OK. Now we see where analytics benefits. Costs savings isn't full benefit.

Blogger

Blanchard, w/ Accenture, looking at just cost reduction -- stories of success with companies that have been around for quite some time have tried various models.

Blogger

(also, hi - Michael Steinhart here and it's a fascinating topic)

Shawn Hushman with KBB -- let's leverage analytics from consumer analytics process before start testing. That's a good best practice. Focus on the business problem first, not testing out a model!

Blogger

I've read that analytics tools are often difficult for business analysts to use - is there movement to democratize the tools?

Who do you rely on for data analysis? 46% say they rely on analytics by somebody else -- I would hope so! Analytics can be so complex and challenging, to do well.

Blogger

Davenport finds it promising that 11 percent have integrated approach to analytics. That's not much, but better than used to be.

Blogger

I would say answer to this poll, analytics for specific functions more than for integrated. 

Blogger

Big-data world is starting to crash on our heads? That's what we hear over and over ...

Blogger

Blanchard makes the point that everybody has a process -- of some sort, which doesn't mean it's a good one or cohesive. That's a bit of a problem.

Blogger

The gap is being closed data-driven and gut feel -- which is good. I think still always need gut to some extent, but obviously, the strong the data, the analytics, the communication of  the results, the better the decision potential.

Blogger

These results are just about the same in earlier session, I think.

Blogger

Let's see, HBR's Herrin is going to poll. Execs are strongly committed to decisionmaking or gut feel. our guess?

Blogger

Davenport criticizes business writers, including himself, for not looking at the big picture about decision-making -- in other words, not by vertical by vertical

Blogger

I'm here. Can't wait.

Blogger

Going live in few secs ...

Blogger

KBB also has a good story to tell on how it nurtures analytics talent and assures the business understands and can reap the value of analytics.

Blogger

And, I'm looking forward to hearing more on what Kelley Blue Book is up to lately with analytics. Back in September 2011 KBB had been thinking about, but not quite ready to move on high-performance analytics, for example. 

Blogger

Wake-up calls is a good topic -- I wonder if we'll here any real horror stories?

Blogger

Watch the live simulcast here

Blogger

Getting ready to go here with our second live e-chat. Panelists on tap are:

Tom Davenport, thought leader and author

Shawn Hushman, VP of enterprise analytics at Kelley Blue Book

Stacy Blanchard, organization effectiveness services and human capital analytics lead, Accenture Analytics

Renee, Nocker, director of technology product marketing, SAS

Angelia Herrin, with HBR, will be moderating, as she did in first our first live e-chat earlier today

Blogger

Here's where we'll be chatting live from the SAS Global Forum Executive Conference session, "Wake-Up Calls: An Analytical Story of Talent, Culture and Struggles," featuring analytics thought leader Tom Davenport and speakers from Accenture, Harvard Business Review, Kelley Blue Book, and SAS. Whether you're attending the session live in Orlando or via live simulcast (register in advance), join in the conversation!

Blogger


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