In what can be described kindly as today’s uncertain business economy, it’s not surprising that many companies are opting to duck and cover until the all-clear is sounded. But while going to a defense strategy might be a reasonable reaction to current market conditions, it can also lead to some common, but serious missteps.
Let’s take a look at the Six Mistakes Companies Are Making Today, And How You Can Avoid Them.
- Take existing customers for granted: Few companies can really count on the loyalty of their customers, especially if competitors are hard at work trying to woo them away. So it’s important to stay in touch with your customers, know their needs, and be able to react appropriately.
- Fail to capitalize on market opportunities: According to a 2009 study, more than half of Fortune 500 companies got their start during a downturn or bear market. And there are countless stories of companies that took advantage of down market opportunities to put their competition out of business. Unless you have the data and analytics tools to identify opportunities, chances are you’re not going to see a silver lining in cloudy business conditions.
- Allow operational inefficiencies to persist: Even when the economy is strong, it’s hard to understand why some companies continue the less than optimal practices that may limit its ability to compete, or worse, negatively impact bottom line growth. To make sure this isn’t one of the mistakes that they make, forward thinking companies are counting on integrated business intelligence solutions to help them identify and quickly address inefficiencies
- Let programs go undiagnosed and uncorrected: At the end of the day, it doesn’t much matter whether you don’t fix a problem or even recognize that you have one. By generating timely and accurate data about your business, you can identify and prioritize existing problems, especially those that a weakened economy could turn into very serious events.
- Drive Wrong Behavior in the Organization: When corporate goals aren’t clearly defined, communicated and measured, even the best intentioned department managers can drive their teams in the wrong direction. To ensure that all behavior benefits overall company performance, it’s imperative that daily operational data is monitored to make sure that all of your teams are supporting strategic initiatives.
- Fail to Offer Transparency for Stakeholders: The global economic crises is leading business stakeholders and governments to demand great transparency into company finances, operations, decisions, and core performance metrics. Unless the collection and presentation of business data is swift and efficient, partners, investors and customers may become frustrated. They become wary of a company’s inability to monitor itself. Worse, the may become suspicious of perceived secrecy.
How can you avoid making these mistakes?
According to Don Tapscott, an authority in strategic value and impact of information technology, tough economic conditions require companies “to build efficient, high performance organizations based on coherent foundations of information. Organizations must take a global view of critical information if they wish to move from just reacting to economic challenges and instead position themselves for future competitive advantage.”
So what about your company? Are you making the most of business information? If you’re interested in a quick self-assessment to determine if business intelligence software can strengthen your business, answer the six multiple choice questions in this SAP white paper, “Six Mistakes Companies Are Making Today, And How You Can Avoid Them.” (download the paper - no registration required).
Learn more about the mistakes you don’t want to make, and find out if an investment in business intelligence software can help you avoid them.