Data Fluency

The rise of data analytics has brought us numerous buzzwords: predictive analytics, big data, descriptive analytics and data fluency, among countless others.

Above machine learning, business intelligence and real-time analytics, data fluency might be the biggest obstacle to organizations making sense of their data and gaining a long-term competitive edge. It is this obstacle that triggered the interest for this fall’s new Solutio-Event. Because there is a definite need for data driven solutions and data fluent people.

Data Fluency — What Is It?

Like being fluent in a language, data fluency enables people to express ideas about data in a shared language, facilitated by a rich ecosystem. In a business context, data fluency connects employees across roles through a set of standards, processes, tools and terms. Data fluent employees can turn piles of raw data into actionable information because they understand how to interpret it, know the data and know how to use it appropriately, improving decision-making for everyone.

Thursday evening our office in Hoevelaken once again filled with enthusiastic forward looking people. Everybody had an interesting story to share. From people who both practice and teach their field, software developers, BI-analysts, project managers, team managers, and more.

What an enlightening moment it was, when our prided guest speaker Tom Kloosterman presented and informed us about the difference between AI, machine learning, deep learning, data science and big data. We got to learn about the process and the functions of supervised machine learning, and we took a peek behind the curtain of what experts like Tom construct and use: advanced predictive models to determine trends and generate value free forecast. Who better to tell us than a data science expert from KPN, a company that somehow always seems to be a leader and trend setter in the application of new technology and ideas.

However according to a Gartner publication by Matt Asay in 2017, not all analytics programs succeed. Why is it so hard to effectively turn data into actionable decisions? BI Consultant, Lidia Vonk took the floor and explained to us what a data fluent organization looks like, and what the challenges are for each of the dimensions in the data fluency framework; the data consumer, the data producer, the organization’s culture and the ecosystem.

It was with this insight that everyone soon understood the importance of developing people to be able to fluently interpret data. Not understanding, or relying on sheer gut feeling, or even simple suspicion withholds people from their potential to successfully utilize their data resources. Hugo Cloete wrapped up the evening by explaining to us how an organisation can gain insight into how data fluent the organisation and its people are. He explained the data fluency scan, and showed us the outcome of a recent data fluency scan conducted at one of Solutio Consulting’s clients. This was a very insightful practical example. Hugo also shared some of the typical initiatives that can be taken by this client to become a more data fluent organisation and how can bridge the gap to become a more data and action driven organisation.

It has been an insightful evening, giving us a lot to think about. I am surely looking forward to the next Solutio-Event.

– Ansomij Cloete
tom van event 3
Tom Kloosterman
Lidia Vonk
Jolanda Cloete-Wijnbeek
Hugo Cloete