Calls for more visible data leadership if financial firms are to reap benefits of data according to research from data and analytics firm, Cynozure

  • Clear role for better use of data in US financial firms, but data leaders must become more visible and vocal for benefits to be realized.
  • Research exposes disconnect between data teams and the wider organization, with three-quarters admitting the data team is separate from the rest of the business.

NEW YORK, USA 26 July 2023: Leaders of US financial services firms see a clear role for better data, with three-quarters (75%) saying there is more their business can do to improve the use of data, but they don’t know where to start or who to speak to about it in the organization, according to findings from research from data and analytics strategy consultancy, Cynozure.

The majority (98%) of respondents agree that effective use of data is key to running a successful business, but there are still significant gaps that prevent these organizations from fully utilizing the data they hold.

Despite the overwhelming majority (96%) of financial services organizations having a data leader in place, fewer than half (46%) say there is anyone at the senior leadership level responsible for driving the data strategy forward. This disconnect highlights the need for data leaders to become more visible within their organization, particularly when it comes to communicating the data strategy to the senior leadership team. Ideally the data strategy should be designed in alignment to the strategic business objectives to minimize this disconnect and close the gap between the senior leadership team and the data team.

The research shows that a third (32%) of respondents believe the C-Suite does not fully understand the breadth of value of data, highlighting the importance of data leaders being able to clearly communicate the role of data in improving business operations, as well as aiding in more informed and accurate decision making across all areas of a business.

Supporting the senior team to develop a better understanding of data and its capabilities can be a vital first step to improving data literacy across all levels of the business.

One way to facilitate this is to encourage greater engagement between the data team and the rest of the business. This is something that is clearly needed – three-quarters (74%) of respondents say the data team is separate to the rest of the business, and six in ten (60%) say there is little interaction between the data team and other employees across the organization.

The benefits of introducing a robust data strategy are widely recognized – six in ten (60%) say it would aid more accurate, evidence-based decision making, around eight in ten (83%) say it would save time, and a further 62% say it would save money and boost growth. Strong data leadership, improved data literacy, and more integrated teams will be key to helping organizations to realize these benefits.

Jennifer Agnes, Managing Director, Cynozure, comments: “Used right, data is one of the greatest assets that any organization possesses. Strong, visible leadership and effective communication about how benefits can be reaped are vital components to raising awareness of how data can be used to boost efficiencies and drive more accurate, evidence-based decision making across an organization.”

Cynozure is the trusted partner to a number of high-profile brands including Penguin Random House and Soho House. The company works closely with these organizations to support them to use, access and understand their data in a way that facilitates better decision-making across the business – whether to streamline internal processes or improve the customer journey.

Methodology

Research undertaken by Obsurvant between 18th and 22nd November 2022. Findings based on *200 senior managers and above in the financial services sector, with 100 based in the USA.

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