Time pressure ‘is blocking data-led decisions’

Written by Hannah McGrath
08/01/2020

New research has revealed that 40 per cent of business leaders feel pressure to make split-second decisions is standing in the way of data-led processes.

A Censuswide survey of 150 c-suite level executives and 462 business decision-makers in the UK, France and Germany. for data platform Splunk. showed that more than half (53 per cent) were under pressure to make a ‘critical’ business decision once a day, with fewer than one in 100 leaders claiming that they are always able to make decisions led by the actual data.

Nearly all respondents (92 per cent) said they could name a specific business area they believe could be significantly improved by more accurate data, with a third citing ‘customer growth’ as the biggest business opportunity that data could unlock for their business.

Budget was not a constraint for the majority of decision-makers when its came to investing in more or better data sources and software, with eight per cent stating this was a barrier to greater adoption of real time data analytics.

Instead, the research showed that time pressure was leading nearly half (47 per cent) of respondents to rely on gut instinct rather than data-driven insight.

More than half (52 per cent) said that the recommendations of colleagues provided the most useful input, followed by customer feedback (51 per cent) and repetition of a previously successful approach.

Analysis of the results from Splunk suggested that business leaders are often forced to de-prioritise their use of data in decision-making, using it to make ‘rear view mirror’ diagnoses only and potentially missing forward-looking growth opportunities.

James Hodge, chief technical advisor at Splunk, said: “The fact that businesses are producing vast amounts of data is indisputable, but it’s clear from this research that our senior business leaders, including those at board level, are still struggling to access the data on their own terms, when they really need it to power live, forward looking decisions.”

He added: “As an industry we need to do more to support businesses apply their own data to everything they do, and turn it from business diagnosis or remedy, into business development.”