Hand pointing to data presentation on computer screen

How to Improve Operational Efficiency

December 8, 2022 5 minute read
Automate the tedious stuff and free up time to think bigger
Hand pointing to data presentation on computer screen

Big Data hasn’t been news in years, yet organizations still struggle with it. Which data to collect, how to gather it, what insights it yields, how to act on those findings — all questions that modern organizations (particularly marketing teams) grapple with, leading to more sluggish operations and lower than expected bottom lines.

This situation is partly caused by the ever-growing number of data sources that organizations across verticals can now access. A lender like Academy Mortgage, for example, can track which pages on its website a would-be homebuyer visits, while a retailer like lululemon can see which in-store events customers registered for and whether they bought online or at a brick-and-mortar shop.

Similarly, patient data can help health systems know when to reach out about age-appropriate procedures or vaccines, while schools and colleges can use information about prospective students to invite them to open houses or other campus events.

In short, there’s a wealth of data from which businesses can derive value — and automation is the spade that can unearth that treasure. With automation, organizations can more quickly act on customer insights to send the right SMS promotion at just the right time. 

Or what if a shoemaker knew that a customer has bought boys’ boots in gradually bigger sizes every few months? They could send a coupon for kids’ shoes once a quarter. Not only would the outreach build on the customer relationship, it would also be relevant and timely. That’s the power of automation.

So, let’s look at the best tool for automating how organizations collect and analyze audience data and the kinds of operational efficiencies it produces.

Customer data platforms — synonymous with operational efficiency?

Many of today’s enterprises already use customer data platforms (CDPs), but others may still be hemming and hawing over their worth. 

Well, hem and haw no more. 

CDPs offer businesses a way to consistently serve customer experiences more efficiently by automating data collection, storage, and analysis. In fact, automation is more helpful to business operations as a whole while being positive for both employee and customer experience. A survey from Workato, for example, found that, over the next two years, 64% of enterprises plan to develop automations that enhance employee experience and 57% plan to do the same for customer experience. 

Improvements in both experiences are great for business.

So, for collecting, compiling, and analyzing data, CDP-powered automation allows enterprises to improve operational efficiency in more ways than you think — from employee experience to customer experience and enterprise growth. 

Let’s look at how.

Data automation improves employee experiences

Would you rather manually enter, edit, and organize data in a spreadsheet or spend that time strategizing about what the data shows you? It’s okay to admit that manual data tasks are tedious assignments that are as time-consuming as they are drab. Anyone would agree. 

A CDP automates data collection, storage, and analysis, leaving staff time and brain power to focus on the creative solutions its insights suggest. Employees won’t burn out on menial, repetitive tasks if they leave machines to do the tasks that they’re better, faster, and more suited for, lessening the risk of human error and saving companies time and money in the future. 

Creating excellent customer experiences through data automation

The key word in the phrase “customer data platform” is — you guessed it — customer. It’s their data your organization collects, and it’s their business you aim to win.

A CDP secures that customer data, ensures it’s accurate, and organizes it in one place, making it accessible for teams companywide. With customer data centralized, each department that needs it can access it from the same database so information is consistent from team to team. Different departments can see where customer data is being used, and content can remain targeted and relevant to a customer’s interests or browsing activity.

Jumping off the previous section, errors in manual data entry and organization most often rear their ugly heads in customer experience. How often have you received repetitive emails from a company after opting out of an offer? Or been the victim of overzealous ad targeting for items you don’t care about? Or push notifications for something you’ve already bought? 

CDPs take the guesswork out of data organization, storage, and analysis. Plus, cross-organization visibility makes data transparency universal from the get go. This knowledge allows you to craft personalized experiences that magnetize customers rather than repel them.

Automating business processes

Where does all this leave your organization? Happy employees and happy customers are generally a prerequisite for a healthy business. Your organization will ultimately save time, money, comply with data privacy goals and regulations, and be poised for growth with the automation that a CDP provides. 

It’ll accelerate data collection, remove error-prone manual analysis, and provide your organization with automated data processes flexible enough to handle ever-greater amounts of incoming data as your business scales. 

And it all starts with a CDP, the central data hub that commands your organization’s processes for customer data. 

What next? 

Improve your own operational efficiency by storing your customer data in one place, cleaned and packaged in 360-degree customer profiles. Then use machine learning applications to analyze those profiles to pinpoint exactly what your organization wants to know and build campaigns from there. All that’s left for your employees is the fun part — execute on what you’ve learned — but first you need a CDP.

If this sounds too good to be true, you should see it in action. Drop us a line, and we’ll run you through the magic of Acquia CDP.

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