A universally true statement is that business planning (business survival) is based on confidence and reliability of your data about customers, sales, operations, inventory, scheduling, and finance. Data problems in any of these areas can be catastrophic since forecasting your costs based on wrong inventory numbers can see you out-run your cash flow in 2 production cycles or less.

Since you’re already in business, you have the bare minimum of controls in place. So, where do you improve?

Every business is unique but there is common low hanging fruit to immediately look at plus standard questions to apply to tease out key data elements which make your business unique. In the first group, the best place to start is with the systems that are already in place and look to extract more value from your ERP, accounting, sales, and other specialty systems.

Don’t make the mistake of behaving as if your staff are fully using your current systems or even using them correctly. Take advantage of your vendors’ (often free) training on how to better control data in their systems.

What data makes your business unique?

This is where a whole business approach helps in looking for what data needs to be controlled and protected and extends far beyond your intellectual property. These areas primarily include spaces “between” your software systems and it’s important to remember that the data your business needs control of is not just the content of files. It includes the relationship of one silo of data to another and associated business processes.

Building upon your existing system vendors will lead to a mapping of business processes that are needed in order to do your business. These processes are data elements to be controlled and protected.

RadiusBridge® develops and supports custom Data Management systems for executives to know, protect, and grow their business.