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November 2020: Enterprise Users and Clients will focus on Data Collaboration in 2021

Publication date: 13 November 2020

After a year which clearly nobody predicted with Lock-down after Lock-down, a chaotic US election and slow realization that global warming is reality, we are looking at the end of the year and start preparing our plans and teams for 2021. Yes, 2020 is almost over, even that it feels that it just started.

The Global pandemic has had a significant impact on all of us and has also severely impacted the Consulting and Services Business Intelligence Market. I like to share my thoughts and forecast for 2021 and like to do so out of this perspective:

Enterprise users and clients focus on Data Collaboration

Everybody is affected by Covid-19 and next to a change in client demand, the internal work environment has most like changed more and faster than it has since world-war 2. The different lock-down scenarios, closed offices and social distancing have led to a new reality how we work and collaborate with each other. The so called ‘Modern Workspace’ has become reality for most of us.

In the early days of the pandemic the challenge for many of our clients was to stay operationally in remote settings. Setting up a mobile workplace with laptops, mobile phones, file sharing and video-calling/chatting infrastructure was a challenge for many companies. Decisions have not only been infrastructure related, but changes have been more serious.

Let me illustrate by an example. One of my MBA alums who works for a large multinational company shared this insight with me. They planned 2020 for their sub-unit a travel and entertainment budget of CHF 8’000’000. In November their spent forecast for the full year 2020 was CHF 1’800’000.

Now the clue – for 2021 they are only planning CHF 1’500’000 for the same unit. This significant change has not only an impact on the travel services, hotel and transportation industry, but clearly transforms the way we work together. The ‘new normal’ is a reality with a mix of home, mobile and classic office environment. And this ‘new normal’ is here to stay and will leave us with additional challenges independent from new medications and vaccinations on the horizon.

Our clients are getting prepared and developed a differentiate view towards the collaboration challenges ahead. They have realized that they need different processes and tools for different company functions, use-cases and data-complexity their teams are confronted with.  Especially teams in the area of finance, sales and business intelligence formulate a strong need to collaborate data-point specific. To keep track within a conversation it is necessary to have the right context and this context is mostly given by data and related KPIs. Questions like – ‘why COGS for this product category, that region and this month are down or up’ are important and get easily lost in translation.

Current tools are not supporting a data driven dialogue and data driven collaboration. It is important to engage with the right set of people into these discussions. It is important to decide who is part of the discussion and who is not – who has access to the data and who is restricted from select sets of data. And finally, our clients have formulated a strong need to save such conversations in a secure place where data and decisions are tractable. This supports compliance and audit demands.

I am convinced that Collaboration Strategies will further evolve and that the tools available today will not be the tools of the future. KPI-CHAT in combination with tackles these challenges and we will further develop to stay ahead of the current Business Intelligence collaboration wave.

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