The amount of people who think that a data team is just like any other team involved in digital escapades, is considerable. We have said it before but we feel the need to say it again: a Data Team is a revolution and should not be compared to a regular I.T. team.
The problem stems from confusion over what a data team actually does. This needs to be clarified quickly because those making this mistake may actually be in need of a data team themselves.
A data team possesses a unique skillset that can improve almost any business. The teams will usually contain:
- Data engineers or similar fulfilling technical roles, responsible for data access & platform stability.
- Data scientists using the data to drive ROI, perhaps working on advanced features.
- Data analysts building dashboards from reports, for diagnosis and reporting.
- Citizen data professionals working alongside the technical members to interrogate the data and troubleshoot.
- Executives (CTO, CIO or CDO) for an overview linking the data team and management strategy.
When utilised correctly a data team will, in simple terms, make smarter things happen faster. Instead of guesswork, a data team will find facts, dissect the information and feed that back into the business loop.
Big firms may have a whole team fulfilling one of these functions, while smaller businesses or organic start-ups may have one individual fulfilling a few roles, with some automation until the business is large enough to hire a bigger team.
The confusion may stem from the fact that, in the past, the individuals who would normally fulfil those roles would be distributed throughout the company, in departments like finance and I.T., so what can first appear to be a fear of the future or a lack of understanding may just be people being used to the way things were done in the recent past. The value of this reorganisation is starting to be understood across the board but we are not there just yet.
When originating or recruiting a data team, you must ask yourself these questions:
What is the team trying to achieve?
What matters to the team?
How can you scale impact from the framework?
How can value be delivered?
How can you mine the most value from analytics?
How can you improve the organisation?
Will there be constant reviews to improve the systems?
What does the future hold for the team?
Starting the journey to understand data teams and the benefits they can bring to your firm, is an important strategic one because the future is calling.
For more information on how to build a world-leading Data Team, sign-up for our FREE PDF eBook now here.