When launching a new analytics project, delivering a high value initial use case is crucial. But how can you ensure that the selected use case will demonstrate the power of analytics within the organization?
This is not a quick and easy decision. Several factors must be considered, including:
- Internal Politics – Which topics are currently important to the leadership? What will provide the most powerful story for the public?
- Value – What’s the most pressing business challenge within the organization? Which business challenge, if solved, would make the most significant impact on the organization’s operations?
- Complexity – Which problem cannot be easily solved with a traditional approach? Which problems have been addressed with other methods before, yet continue to persist?
- Risk – What option does not introduce significant implementation risk?
The key is balancing these factors effectively. For example, if the problem is easy to solve, then the power of analytics cannot be demonstrated. On the other hand, if the complexity is too high, then you might not deliver the promised functionality or fail to deliver all together.
Each year the capabilities of analytics tools and technology become more powerful, expanding the opportunity for organizations to tackle their biggest problems. Make sure to keep in mind the functionality of your analytics platform and leverage it in your solution design. This will help reduce project risk while also driving down the delivery timeline and justifying the costs of these tools.
Finally, while the initial use case is being selected and set up, it’s essential to drum up the internal support, which will enable a smooth transition from a “start-up” effort to an enterprise effort.
Once you have considered all of the factors above, its critical that you pick a use case and get moving. If you wait even just a few more months, you will be bypassing months of payback down the road and delaying your ability to learn valuable lessons of what will and won’t work with regards to big data and analytics solutions in your agency.