DATA DATA DATA – June 2023

Do you want to grow your business, innovate, drive efficiencies, &/or create new revenue streams? Of course, you do! Well data is the starting point…and this is the only data-focused roundup you’ll ever need!

In this issue, I’m focusing on two questions that keep coming up time and time again, as they’re both super topical…

  1. How can you secure a budget for exploratory AI data projects without a business case or ROI?
  2. In the world of ChatGPT and AI, are dashboards dead? 

QUESTION #1 – How can you secure a budget for exploratory AI data projects without a business case or ROI?

LinkedIn, Twitter, all the social media channels, and even the tabloids are talking about how AI is going to change the world. And how, in the business world, success will come down to whoever grabs the AI toys quickly and creates a competitive advantage, will win. So, you’d think businesses would be throwing money around to invest in AI, wouldn’t you?

Nope. Speaking to Chief Data Officers, CTOs, Heads of Data and other data and technology leaders, budget is as hard to come by as ever. Particularly in these tough economic times when many businesses are behind budget and reducing costs. It’s a tough market and money is tight.

Finding budget for innovation or research projects is even harder because often the ROI, or return on investment, is tricky or even impossible to quantify. Think of the types of projects you might want to explore…

  • Using ChatGPT or large language models (LLMs) to add value to your business – you can probably define the cost based on the number of people you’d want to involve in a project. But the potential revenue increase or cost reduction? Eeek, that’s a tough thing to estimate.
  • Using AI and machine learning models to forecast something for your customers – again, you can probably calculate the cost based on people’s time. But the potential price that customers might pay for this additional service…? That’s at best, a hypothesis that needs to be tested.

Without a believable ROI or credible business case, it’s really hard to justify spending money on people or tech to innovate.

So, how do you secure budget for exploratory AI data projects without a business case or ROI?





Want to know more about these options? Keep reading.

Want some help coming up with AI use cases, building a business case for AI or creating a data-led innovation-enabled culture? Schedule a call with me.

QUESTION #2 – In the world of ChatGPT and AI, are dashboards dead?

ChatGPT enables business leaders to get answers to business questions by asking a question and getting an answer. So, will ChatGPT change the way we consume business intelligence (BI) derived from data as well and therefore our use of BI tools like Power BI, Tableau & others?

Today, business intelligence is often consumed by viewing dashboards – you might call them trackers, spreadsheets, logs, or similar. But usually, business data is presented to business leaders in some kind of structured format, whether in numbers or graphs. Think about…

  • Board reports on financials
  • Marketing campaign dashboards
  • Call centre performance statistics
  • Customer satisfaction & complaints
  • And so on

We all expect to see business data presented to us in the same way every week or month, and we get used to the format and layout and the way that metrics have been calculated in the same way every time.

We also know that if we ask someone a data-related question, unless it’s already included in one of these dashboards, someone will have to go get the data and run some statistics in a spreadsheet, in order to answer the question…which could take hours, days, or even weeks. We’ve all been there, haven’t we?!

But imagine a business plugging a tool like ChatGPT into all their data systems…in future business leaders could simply type, or ask a question, and get an immediate question. Think of questions like…

  • Are we under or over-target on revenue this week?
  • Which region performed best last month?
  • Give me a summary of our KPIs year-to-date
  • Tell me which metrics I need to worry about
  • And so on

So, with such easy access to business intelligence, will business leaders need dashboards at all in future? If the answers to all business intelligence questions are on the end of a question, why bother to check a dashboard? Just ask a business question and get a data-powered answer. Easy!

But, if this was the case, why hasn’t this happened already? Microsoft Power BI has a natural language processing (NLP) capability, where you can ask it to show data in any format of your choice, live for 7+ years and yet it’s rarely used.

So, are humans truly curious and do we really like to explore anything and everything we like, all the time? Or are we lazy, habitual, and just want to be served business insight on a plate instead?

Want to know if dashboards are dead? Read this.

Want some help integrating ChatGPT and AI into your dashboards and business solutions? Chat with me here.

Now for some very exciting news…

We’re ready to share our data expertise with more innovative and fast-growing businesses, and who better to help spread the word than our fantastic community of supporters? 

If you know anyone who could use a boost in their data game, please introduce us. All you need to do is hit reply with the details! Your support means the world to us and of course, I’m happy to return the love too. 

Thank you for reading…I’ll be back soon with more data news next month.

 And, if you’re in data hell, I’m data Hels!

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