Business is driven by the information that we have and database programming allows for that information to flow properly. The processes that our businesses follow must provide feedback at every stage in order to improve the outcomes for our clients. Increasingly, we are realizing that raw data from throughout our organizations provide information on the preferences of our clients, the speed of our delivery, the effectiveness of our personnel, and the value intrinsic in our offering. By improving on any or all of these measures, we are able to increase our competitiveness and our profit.
The Evolution of Databases
It used to be the standard that businesses developed paper-based tracking systems. The customer book on the receptionist’s desk was the database of clients. The system evolved so that many businesses utilized excel spreadsheets and took their analysis and reporting to a new level of sophistication. These days, businesses are moving to database-driven systems that can scale with their business and provide for increased functionality.
Increasing Demands on Business
As business grows, the demands upon it become more varied and challenging. An increased customer base often means businesses lose the personal touch on which their success was initially founded. Database driven operations can ensure that information gets to the people that need it when they need it, making them more effective in their business relationships with their clients… keeping the personal touch.
Business growth also brings with it the challenges of tracking service delivery and product delivery. There may be stringent requirements for ensuring things get where they need to get to, when they need to get there, depending on the industry in which your business operates.
Improved Service Levels
Even service industries, for example, the finance industry, have documents that go back and forth between clients and companies. Documents go post, information is passed by fax and by email, and all this information is lost when something goes wrong or is not reported correctly.
Database driven systems ensure that there is transparency through the business, and even transparency with clients if a web portal is enabled for their own tracking processes.
Investment NOT Cost
There are so many applications of database-driven information. Whether you are primarily online or offline business, the process of developing a meaningful system for your business really is worthwhile. Bottlenecks in business are perhaps one area that will cause more reputation damage than in any other facet.
Case Study Apple
If reports are to be believed the Apple iPhone was struggling to deliver its iPhone 6 to the market in 2013. Reports suggest that it is the ability of their manufacturers to deliver the component parts to the level and volume required that is the main stumbling block. Understanding the demands of the business means understanding every facet and every component for iPhone. Their tracking must be spot on or they will over promise and under deliver.
Most businesses do not have the demands of “an Apple.” However, the principle remains true at whatever level you operate. You must be able to understand where your business is at any one time, and what you need to do to prioritize the effective completion of every task.
Customers are becoming more demanding and businesses are becoming more efficient. In order to grow and stay competitive as you grow, you must have a process that facilitates this. That means, upgrading to a database-driven system that can provide you with the information analysis tools and reporting to keep you ahead of the game.