Automated workflows are the solution to most data-based problems. They save time and money, increase efficiency and provide real-time insights that would be impossible to compile through traditional methods.
But, working with data is also a big responsibility. Data can be difficult to obtain because it can contain sensitive information, information that would otherwise be privileged. As such, there are a few questions to consider prior to changing the way your organization works with data, setting up a new workflow or moving forward into more in-depth data collection.
What information do we need?
Another way to look at this question, is “what’s the minimum amount of data we can collect that will be effective?”
Many companies and organizations fall into the “more is better” trap when it comes to data. But, this isn’t always true, and it’s not always the most responsible path. To use your data the most effectively, and with the greatest benefit, first, consider what – and how much – data you actually need. Then, start building.
Will the data collected be handled with the security it deserves?
Data is valuable, often because of the sensitive nature of it. This means that, when creating a data workflow, collecting data, storing it, or otherwise, working with a secure system is essential.
If data cannot be handled securely, it would be better – for those it relates to and for your organization – to not collect it in the first place. Security must be a top priority at all times.
Who will the data that is collected benefit?
Taking ethics into consideration is important. Who will the data you collect and work with benefit? Your organization? Your customers, patients or other members of society?
The answer might be that it only benefits your organization, and in many cases, that is fine! But, if it can benefit a larger group, it might be even more important. It’s something to consider during the evaluation of your data needs.
Are we transparent in our data collection methods?
If you collect user data or customer data, it’s important that how it’s collected and what you do with it is clearly stated. It might seem like a given to you, maybe even something that should be obvious. But, today, more and more individuals are concerned about their safety and security, especially when it relates to information that is private, or semi-private.
If the data you collect relates to individuals, it’s important that those individuals understand how their data is being used, what security measures are in place and how they will be protected (will they remain anonymous? Will specific security programs be enacted?).
Transparency is valued today more than ever before, think about this before moving forward.
How will each affected party be impacted by our actions?
When working with data, impacts don’t have to be negative. In most cases, there are very positive outcomes from the collection and proper use of data.
Disaster responses can improve. Food safety can increase while recalls decrease. Engineering processes can become more streamlined. Business operations can become more focused than ever before. Medicine and its research can become transformative. Each of these impacts is positive.
Think about those affected by the way you use data, or will use data going forward. What are the benefits? What about the drawbacks? Considering the bigger picture is critical when working with data.
Data is powerful, collecting and analyzing it through traditional means can be complicated and time-consuming. By combining powerful workflows with responsible collection and reporting procedures, it can change the way your business works for the better.
Ready to make a change? Ready to gain efficiency while saving time and money? Consider the questions above, check out our one-minute demos, then contact us today. We’re excited to see how our automated workflows can change the way your business works for the better.