Data Summit Connect 2021 Closing Keynote Looks at Post-Pandemic Data and Analytics Strategies

Data Summit Connect 2021 Closing Keynote Looks at Post-Pandemic Data and Analytics Strategies

The events of early 2020 resulted in cataclysmic changes that interrupted many companies' data analytics programs. The economic upheaval caused by the global pandemic will have a lasting impact for many companies.  For some, strategies like cloud migrations have been accelerated, while others have turned to self-service data analytics to save the day.

In the final keynote of Data Summit Connect 2021, John O'Brien, CEO and principal advisor, Radiant Advisors, reflected on the seismic shifts of 2020. He also looked ahead to a post-pandemic future and how companies are refreshing their data and analytics strategies to prioritize efforts in data architecture and enablement.

While 2021 has not represented a complete return to business as usual, it has presented an opportunity to absorb the lessons of 2020 and reinvest and craft road maps to thrive in the future.

Whether more stability and predictability return this year—or not until 2022?many organizations have learned important lessons about data transformation and what it means to be agile and, as a result, are looking ahead with greater clarity, said O’Brien.

According to O’Brien, as organizations absorbed the impact of COVID-19 on business practices, the characteristics of 2020 were uncertainty, volatility, and disruption.

Immediately, companies prioritized benefits and cloud migration was a first reaction to lower costs.

Amid rapidly implemented WFH strategies, companies sought to empower front-line business users with data: providing access to data and analytics capabilities, enabling business collaboration and publishing analytics, and supporting on-demand capabilities for self-sufficiency.

Companies also put a clear focus on operational efficiencies, by improving use of process automation, data workflows, and robotic process automation.

The disruption has been translated into new business requirements for the future, which will shape organizations’ business strategy, analytics, data architecture, and data infrastructure, said O’Brien:

  • Business strategy: a focus on more agility, speed, and innovation
  • Analytics: a commitment to empowering business uses for self-service decision making and faster analytics; embrace of platforms that encourage collaboration; and capabilities that are scalable, intuitive for everyone in the company to use
  • Data architecture: use of low-code/no-code options for data ingestion via connectors, enterprise repositories (data lakes) for all data accompanied by data catalogs and metadata, and the ability to self-provision data working areas
  • Data infrastructure: a reliance on cloud for scalability and on-demand capabilities, cloud-managed services for faster deployments, and, in general, smaller faster deployments

Uncertainty still prevails as questions about the pandemic and its weight on the economy continue. Still, O’Brien said, companies have a much more clearly articulated vision for the future and what they want to achieve in the new normal, whether it emerges this year or in 2022.

O’Brien’s closing keynote was titled, “How Companies Are Shifting to Business Outcomes for Their Driving Data and Analytics Strategies.”

More information about Data Summit Connect 2021 is available here.
Replays of this and all Data Summit Connect 2021 sessions are available to registered attendees for a limited time and many presenters have also made their slide decks available.