Let’s face it. Your boss’ priorities might be different than yours. While you can geek out for hours on database management, your boss might have a harder time understanding its value. Or, he/she might be all for it but hasn’t completely grasped why database management is such a crucial component of your business.
In this blog post, we will share how to explain what database management is and its value to your boss. We will also share a few examples on how to make the case for database management if your company is still living in the spreadsheet era.
What Is Database Management?
Simply put, database management is how you maintain an organized collection of data stored in a computer system.
That data can range from customer contact information, a history of all the transactions your business has ever had, to a detailed record of every person that has ever visited your website. Whatever information needs to be stored, organized and reported upon should live in a database.
Why Does My Company Need Database Management?
Database management provides many benefits to a company. Among the most important ones are:
Eliminating Redundancy: Ever heard of the term “single version of the truth”? Managing one centrally located data resource is important to eliminate duplicate efforts and keep everyone on the same page.
Discrepancy Issues: Whenever there’s a change, maintaining multiple data records means going to various places to reflect the change. What happens if someone forgets to update one of the records? A central database management system ensures all your records are updated and consistent.
Data You Can Actually Use: Asides from always having the sneaking suspicion that someone might have made a mistake somewhere, managing only one data source where all the information is coherent, related and authenticated will facilitate data analysis and making informed business decisions.
Automating Processes: Programming automatic backup rules, establishing access based on roles, consolidating information coming from multiple platforms, are all important benefits database management provides.
The Business Value of Database Management
If your boss isn’t 100% sold on the idea of database management, here are a few ways to explain its value.
Database Management Increases Operational Efficiency
As the volume of business data grows, maintaining one (or several) spreadsheets to manage data can become a nightmare. First, if transcribing information by hand, there’s always the possibility of human error. It also takes an incredible amount of resources and time to maintain manual spreadsheets.
Then, there’s the “WHERE is that information?!??” phenomenon. We’ve all been there: Spending hours searching for information from one file to the other, muttering under our breaths “I swear I saw that somewhere!” Whole lotta fun, right? Maintaining easy access and streamlining information across departments is crucial to keep your business moving forward at the speed modern times require.
Database Management Prevents Compliance and Legal Risks
“Yes! The auditors are coming!” Said no one. EVER. Handing over a ton of spreadsheets to auditors and wishing them the best to connect the dots the way that only Johnny can is costly, time-consuming, and burdensome for everyone involved. Especially Johnny, who will most likely spend a few weeks in the conference room providing files, fixing manual data entry errors and connecting information.
Even better than the auditors, let’s talk about hackers. If your business has a security breach, your data is better off behind a database management system’s security protocol than sitting out there on your central server. You can also establish better access controls so employees can only access information that they need to perform their functions.
There’s also the risk of data loss. You don’t even need a sophisticated security breach to lose your data. It only takes one person to delete or misplace the wrong file to possibly lose years of information. That risk alone should be enough to sell anyone on the value of database management.
Database Management Empowers Business Growth
Let’s say your boss’ focus is on increasing sales. He/she hires a stellar digital marketer to figure out how to get new customers online. The first thing that marketer will do is ask for data. Marketing is driven by data: demographic information, sales history, and trends, product performance, website metrics, email lists… Do you have all that information organized and readily available?
Maintaining easy access to data is also important for customer service. Let’s say a customer calls in with an issue and they want to return an item. Do you have time to sifts through different files to find all the information needed to process the return while the customer patiently (or not) waits on the line?
When explaining what database management is to your boss, the most important thing you must do is demonstrate the business value database management provides. Your boss might be driven by sales, leads… whatever KPI makes your boss’ eye sparkle, use that one to explain database management and its value.
If you’re exploring the best options to implement a database management system in your company, contact us today to chat about your needs. We can help you analyze, recommend and implement solutions to solve your most complex database needs.