Field Service

Big Data Requires Wrangling to Be Useful

With iPads, wearables and smartphones becoming ubiquitous in the field, the C-suite has more data on its hands than it knows what to do with. Big Data holds the golden insights into how to make business processes more efficient, but there’s still a lot of “janitor work” that needs to be done.

That janitor work is also known as data wrangling, which refers to the immense amount of work required by data scientists and analysts. In fact, data scientists spend up to 80 percent of their time doing mundane tasks including collecting and preparing data, according to The New York Times. The reason so much data wrangling needs to happen is because the raw data is disorganized and useless to the C-suite and executives.

“Because of the diversity of data, you spend a lot of your time being a data janitor, before you can get to the cool, sexy things that got you into the field in the first place,” Matt Mohebbi, a data scientist and co-founder of Iodine, told the NYT.

Timothy Weaver, chief information officer at Del Monte Foods, calls this problem an “iceberg” issue since the focus is centered on the end result rather than the smaller insights learned in the process, according to the NYT. The Big Data that large field service companies, such as UPS and Comcast, tap into is often just one source of data that they have available to them.

To best utilize all of the data, organizations need to look beyond the surface. Weaver said that Del Monte Foods can use specific sets of data to enhance each business stage, ultimately improving product delivery, adjusting shipments based on weather and reducing inventory when necessary.

“The more visibility you have, the more intelligent decisions you can make,” Weaver told the NYT.

Service leaders need to find ways to create greater visibility by making data easy to analyze, understand and apply to the business. Regardless of whether an organization has a data scientist, the insights that are gathered through technology and customer feedback are only useful if they are converted into simple and digestible language.

H/t: The New York Times

 

Want to run a better service organization?

Sign up to get the latest Field Service Digital news delivered to your inbox. 

You have Successfully Subscribed!