Nestlé Global Analytics & Innovation Manager Jens Winterberg on legacy firms’ struggles with data and analytics
Despite a significant amount of investment into analytics programs, many of which are enjoying decent returns, older companies burdened by legacy processes are failing to unlock the true power of analytics.
The holy grail — applying analytics to create harmonious and continuous improvement in operational efficiency across all business functions — is frustratingly out of reach.
In an interview with Techerati, Jens Winterberg, Global Analytics & Innovation Manager at Nestlé, put forward his two cents about why older companies struggle to capitalise on data’s possibilities.
Having spearheaded analytics innovation at Nestlé for the best part of two decades, a time which has seen the company standardise data and end-to-end analytics processes and systems, Jens’ opinions on the matter are worth more than most.
For Jens, if companies do not embed analytics ‘centrally’ into the line of business, their analytics programs will never match the scalability or agility of companies born in the internet age.
But what does it mean to ‘embed analytics at the centre’?
Analytics at the centre
For any business function to benefit from data, whether its Marketing & Sales, HR, or Finance, it needs to follow defined best practices and supporting master data standards. Jens says that while traditional companies are defining these metrics, they are doing so independently from each other and then reporting on performance after.
He argues companies should instead follow in the footsteps of digital disruptors by building data standards and business processes jointly around their analytical needs. Then he says analytics must be performed throughout the lifecycle of the process by the relevant stakeholders, not reported on to the board ad-hoc by the “data guys”.