Executives prioritise data over instinct

13 June 2012

PARIS: Brand owners are increasingly relying on hard data rather than instinct or experience to make strategic decisions, a poll of executives has shown.

Of the 600 senior managers surveyed by Capgemini, a consultancy, for the report, two-thirds said they believed they worked for a "data-driven" company. A similar total (65%) said the proportion of corporate decisions taken on the basis of "hard analytic information" was rising.

By contrast, a clear majority (54%) said that decisions taken due to a manager's personal intuition or prior experience were "suspect".

The strong support for data also came despite almost half (42%) of respondents agreeing that data analysis made decision-making slower, and 67% expressing concern about the accuracy of the data they used as a basis for their decisions.

Just over half (51%) also complained about the lack of qualified data analysts available to corporations.

Paul Nannetti, global sales and portfolio director at Capgemini, said: "The exploitation of Big Data fuels a step change in the quality of business decision-making.

"Genuinely data-driven companies are able to monitor customer behaviors and market conditions with greater certainty, and react with speed and effectiveness to differentiate from competition."

The popularity of data-driven decision-making varied from category to category, according to the Capgemini poll.

Executives of energy and natural resources firms were most likely to agree that more and more of their decisions were being made on the basis of data, on 76%. Pharma (75%) and financial services firms (73%) came in second and third places on this measure.

Data sourced from Capgemini; additional content by Warc staff