If operations are running rough in your business, chances are your data systems may be at fault.


Getting a grip on what’s slowing you down is the first step towards avoiding a total breakdown further along the road.


Maybe you just need a tap and tighten, or maybe a complete rebuild, but this checklist below will let you know when it’s time to call in a data specialist to look under the bonnet to have you cruising at optimum speed and efficiency.


1. Business keeps stalling


Here’s the problem: Your business is stuck in the slow lane, and you feel left behind by superior technology and engineering that has superseded the model you are driving. Perhaps the data engine driving your business has failed you at critical times in the past, but you’ve been too busy or too bewildered to investigate the source of the problem and the solutions available? Lacking confidence in your data engine is stressful. It hampers your agility, manoeuvrability, and your instinct for hitting the accelerator when you need to go fast, especially with clients and collaborators who are moving at faster speeds and want to do business with you anytime, anywhere.


Here’s a suggestion: There’s no shame in asking for help. ITeM Group has data technicians on hand who will listen (without judgement) to the issues causing you stress and can offer a free diagnosis and Digital Transformation Road Map to gear you up for the long haul. At ITeM, we ask you what your destination is first, then we design the vehicle that will get you there quickest for less – both time and money. Depending on what our assessment reveals, we may suggest changes to applications or just different ways to connect your data pipelines more intelligently. All journeys are different, so we don’t come through the door with fixed ideas and predetermined software. Think of it as a custom build, where the model you are delivered is uniquely suited to how you are travelling now, and where you want to go in the future.


2. All wheel spin and no forward movement


Here’s the problem: You have some top-shelf systems in place and you have a reasonable handle on how they need to work and how you drive them, but you’re not getting the traction you need to meet your project milestones or longer-term strategic objectives. Perhaps you are like the CFO who is technically capable with Excel and perhaps accounting software, but is still manually producing reports and doesn’t really trust the data they receive from a software platform (HR, manufacturing, inventory) so they keep their own version? You can hear the engine humming, and everyone looks busy, but incompatible technology and DIY systems are creating friction that’s a drag on momentum.


Here’s a suggestion: Open up to the possibilities of where a ‘systems integration service’ can take you. This is the journey that awaits when ITeM analyses your business’s objectives and then conducts an integration review and organisational readiness assessment. From there, an integration strategy will be developed, complete with architecture blueprint, roadmaps and governance capabilities. Once embedded, you’ll have the benefit of ongoing quality assurance and training, as well as deployed integration solutions that are expandable and supportable.


3. Underpowered and corners poorly


Here’s the problem: You don’t have power on demand when and where you need it. And when you run into the unexpected (which should always be expected), like obstacles, blockers and sharp corners on a steep incline in slippery conditions, operations can really get the wobbles, especially if there’s instability at the front end (and the backend too)! It’s a bit like the head of IT, who has a significant data project under way and realises that their internal human resources aren’t enough to get the project finished on time. Do they hit the eject button for fear of going into a tailspin and making a bad situation worse, or do they furiously work the gears in the hope of steering straight at a sustainable speed to meet the deadline? It’s a high-risk calculation. Both with potential adverse outcomes. And definitely a lot of sparks.


Here’s a suggestion: ITeM Group can assess the workload you are carrying and adjust the power you need to suit. This saves businesses by being overpowered with expensive and complicated data systems they don’t need and are never likely to use. Similarly, ITeM can ensure you have sufficient power for the job ahead and can adjust the dial in short bursts for interim projects or build systems that offer long-wave energy for far-horizon sustainability. They’ll even provide ongoing consultancy for those that need frequent training and mentoring in how to operate their systems.


4. Has developed indistinct rattles (that are getting louder)


Here’s the problem: Your business is noisy. More of your day is spent troubleshooting and trying to isolate the source of your tension, (maybe involving some blame-shifting, buck-passing and duck-shoving) rather than having calm conversations that are focused on solutions (because data has already verified the problem and everyone has the same, independent trail of objectively garnered truth). Further noise is coming from staff complaints downline that they don’t have the tools they need and complaints from upline that reports are incomplete and slow in arriving. If you find yourself constantly saying (or repeating in your head like a grating rattle) ‘there has to be a better way’, chances are you need a data overhaul.


Here’s a suggestion: Centralise your data through data warehouse applications and data management. Then add supplementary attributes to your data through a business driven approval process and automate your budget and forecasting processes to manage performance. Finally, upgrade your business intelligence by delivering fantastic looking, easy to maintain data visualisations and reports. Four easy steps that sound easy, right? If you get a professional from ITeM on the tools you won’t put a foot wrong.


In summary, if you have old technology that’s being asked to do more beyond its original scope and capacity, or poorly maintained systems, you have a system vulnerable to seizing up and grinding your operation to a halt.


The easiest and quickest way to keep your business travelling at optimum speed is to get your systems a health check to ensure they are fit for purpose.


A system that’s over-taxed for too long is headed for burn-out.


ITeM offers a detailed examination of all facets of your environment. ITeM specialists can recommend and help fix any problem areas, including sluggish performance, clunky business processes and data governance issues.

For more information contact Michael Woodruff on michael.woodruff@itemgroup.com.au or 0408 181 765