Last Saturday I got a phone call from a friend: “I’m in the neighbourhood, do you have coffee if I come over for a visit?”

“Sure!” I said.

We started talking about the usual, family, hobbies and such, but as you guessed, ended up talking about work.

Soon enough we had a piece of blank paper on my kitchen table and were drawing diagrams on it while talking about data and data management in business processes.

Coffee break well spent!

This discussion eventually inspired me to write to you about how crucial it is today for businesses to succeed in setting up their data value chain and avoid both vertical and horizontal silos.

According to a study by Accenture (august 2019) a small group of data driven champions are also high growth companies. They have grown their revenues and profits above industry average during the past years.

What is holding other companies back?

There are, sometimes unseen, silos in data value chain that can prevent companies to make the most out of this valuable asset we call data and become data driven.

Massive amounts of data is being produced every day, but all that information does not provide any value unless you are able to make relevant insights out of it and deliver those insights to all stakeholders when they need it.


What is the data value chain?

Traditional businesses set up a new data value chain to become a data-driven business. This means giving all internal stakeholders clear data and insights based view of the business.

The true value of data lies in the insights based decisions and actions that maximize the benefit of the organisation.

“When your capture, curate and consume process begins to tick like clockwork, data empowers you to build new offerings and disruptive business models (think Uber, Airbnb, Netflix, Alibaba…).” – SANJEEV VOHRA, Global Lead – Technology Officer and Data Business Group, Accenture Technology

The data value chain means the value is added step by step on the data during the data lifecycle.

Actionable data - data value chain

The three Cs in the new data value chain are:


Collect data in various formats with an increasing speed


Perform analysis to provide actionable insights based on that data


Deliver these insights to the right employees around your organization when they need it. As an example, companies use data-based insights to boost productivity, increase production rates, predict customer behaviour or predict equipment failure to decrease unexpected costs.


Avoid Silos in your data value chain

A failure to approach the data value chain in a holistic way can slow down the process of becoming a data-driven business. This can mean a failure to reach an increase in organizational productivity and profitability.

You are only as good as your weakest link in the chain. There can be both vertical and horizontal silos in the data value chain.


Avoid these mistakes


Horizontal Silo

Horizontal silo exists when the focus is on a too narrow set of data (nuances) and the big picture is missed.

Vertical Silo

A vertical silo exists when we fail to deliver all internal stakeholders a clear data and insights based view of the business.

This is a big mistake.


Businesses have increasingly invested in database services, storage platforms, data analysts and business intelligence systems with machine learning or AI capabilities in use, but often fail to share their insights with their employees.

The reports and insights tend to be available for a handful of people.

You are only as good as your weakest link in the chain.


Communicating Data and Insights

Business Analysts and Team Leaders today turn to communication teams to make sure they are able to deliver insights to all internal stakeholders from front line workers to c-level.

Increase your odds;

Smart companies align their organization with visual real-time information. They are using various communication channels from live reports in social intranets to visual dashboards on Workplace Digital Signage to make sure there are no weak links in the Consume part of the Data Value Chain.


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