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October 6, 2023

Self-Service Data Not Quite a Reality Yet, Capital One Software Says

Drew Jolly

(everything possible/Shutterstock)

As the business world continues to transform, it’s becoming pretty clear that self-service data is gearing up to be a game-changer for many companies. There’s a growing push for organizations to have data at their fingertips that they can use with confidence.

But, there’s a catch. While it sounds straightforward, making this dream a reality is quite a feat. A new report by Forrester and Capital One Software shines a light on this: a staggering 86% of data leaders acknowledge the importance of self-service data strategies for business success. Yet, Forrester says over half are wrestling with the complex puzzle of putting it into practice.

The importance of self-service data is well understood, but data leaders are coming up against both tech hitches and cultural hiccups. About half the respondents flagged concerns like maintaining user-friendly environments (49%), improving data trust and quality (49%), and scaling self-service for decentralized environments (47%).

Imagine you’re in the woods with some friends. You feel confident that you know the way out, but things get tricky when everyone has a different idea of the right path. It’s just as challenging when you’re unsure of basic directions like where North is. This dilemma resonates with Forrester’s findings: 50% of respondents felt clueless about kickstarting their self-service data initiatives.

(Source: Forrester report for Capital One Software)

Diving deeper into the report, there’s a training hiccup too. Over half of the data leaders (52%) voiced challenges in developing or adapting training for new self-service data workflows. Almost the same number (47%) seemed hesitant to even dip their toes into these uncharted waters. To navigate out of this, a major cultural compass realignment is in order.

Then there’s the legal minefield. Only 35% of the data leaders surveyed by Forrester felt confident about toeing the regulatory line. And a paltry 25% felt their strategies were giving their data governance managers the backup they needed.

Discussing funding and RIO is a tightrope walk, according to respondents. Linking money spent on self-service data strategies to tangible business benefits is making over half (51%) of the surveyed leaders break a sweat. The upfront price tag often overshadows the potential long-term cost savings, according to the survey.

Forrester’s deep dive found a lopsided adoption of these data strategies, leaning heavily towards particular data roles. A resounding 75% expressed the need for a more collaborative culture to drive self-service data success. Echoing this, 81% vouched for empowering all squads, tech-savvy or not, to milk data for all it’s worth.

Yet, amidst these hurdles, hope shines through: 86% reported a belief that self-service data is critical. Their top wishlist? Building trust in data sources (83%), increasing data usage across the enterprise (83%), and amplifying the company-wide data decode skills (80%).

A proper path to adopting self-service data strategies is fraught with challenges, but the overwhelming consensus among data leaders is its indispensability for future business success. As companies tread this evolving landscape, collaboration, trust-building, and continuous training emerge as pillars. The road might be long and winding, but with the right tools and a shared vision, the destination of a data-empowered enterprise is well within reach.

You can download the study here.

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