Importance of data in digital transformation strategy

Transformation should not necessarily be a big bang. Leaders must look at corresponding data to cleanse and connect different data across enterprise

Pradeep Chakraborty
New Update
Digital transformation

Today, there was a webinar hosted by Dun and Bradstreet on the ‘Importance of data in the digital transformation strategy’.


The participants were: Gautam Dutta, Senior Director, Marketing, Siemens Digital Industries Software, Jigar Mehta, Head, Analytics & Financial Controller, Aditya Birla Health Insurance, Ramanathan Arunachalam, VP, IoT & PED Practice, Inspirisys Solutions Ltd, Abhay Zarkar, VP, Global Practice Head - Enterprise Solutions, Tata Technologies, Sundar Subramanian, President, Global Delivery, Mphasis, and Subrata Das, Head Of Analytics, U GRO Capital Ltd.

The session was moderated by Anand Iyer, Director, Operations & IT, Dun & Bradstreet India.

Opening the session, Anand Iyer, Dun and Bradstreet India, said the importance of data is growing in digital transformation. The industry has seen a lot of profile changes. Database itself matured. There were newer structures. From 2010 onwards, there has been a change. The most widely-sold software is the CRM.


Business processes should revolve around the customers. A lot of data has also come into being. What can be done with this data? There has been analysis and analytics of data. Industry 4.0 has come into being. Digital transformation is now at its peak. Digitization produces petabytes of data.


Economic impact of bad data

There is an economic impact of bad data. Average business losses lead to ~30% of revenues. The impact on Indian businesses is $9.7-14.2 million annually. It costs the US economy at least $3 trillion per annum, due to lost revenues, poor decisions, inefficiency, legal and non-compliance, and unnecessary technology costs.


The cost of bad data is approximated to $100 per record. The losses are only going to go upward, if we don't take actions. About 84% of the CEOs are concerned about the quality of data affecting business decisions. Major contributor to the crisis in information trust is due to bad data.

Gartner predicts that by 2023, AI-enabled automation in data management will reduce the need for IT specialists by 20%. By 2021, entrepreneurs using a cohesive strategy, incorporating data hubs, lakes, and warehouses, will support 30% more use cases than competitors. By 2022, organizations using active meta data to dynamically connect, optimize and automate data integration processes will reduce time to data delivery by 30%.

Four pillars of digital transformation

There are four pillars of digital transformation. Choose a customer-centric business approach to maximize impact. Try out new systems to establish the governance around customer service. Transformation should not necessarily be a big bang.


Leaders must look at corresponding data to quickly cleanse and connect different data across the enterprise. Harmonized and cleansed data should be easily migrated into new systems. Neglecting the flow, quality and governance of data will inevitably negate any RoI in technology and undermine digital transformation initiatives.

Customer experience with digital transformation

Speaking about customer experience with digital transformation, Gautam Dutta, Senior Director, Marketing, Siemens Digital Industries Software, said that data should be transparently available to customers. We offer products for all manufacturing verticals. We need to expand data into intelligence. Data in its basic form is not critical to the customers.



When there is intelligent data, we can also contextualize. We should elevate this to the processes that can be realized. Data can be converted to intelligence, on to knowledge. Wrong data is something coming to a user is the data that cannot be used.

Data can be supported and contextualized. Then, it becomes intelligent. At least 90% of SMBs are reluctant to get into this area. Most of the SMEs today want more of this aspect. Data goes on to become the single source of truth.

Optimization of business processes

Next, there was a session that looked at how optimization of business processes has resulted in better customer experience. Jigar Mehta, Head, Analytics & Financial Controller, Aditya Birla Health Insurance, said that they get data from many sources. “We try and create one view and better-quality data. We are looking to improve the customer experience. We digitized the data based on AI-based OCR technique. The impact on business processes and outcomes has also been impacted.



“We have a data warehouse. We are synchronizing the data lakes and data marts. We create one view for all these data points. We look at how we can augment this data internally and externally. It also helps in future price and claims management. When we use data analytics, we are seeing customer retention much better. We are able to catch frauds as well.”

Managing data transformation

Next, IoT is used to capture data. How do you manage data transformation? Ramanathan Arunachalam, VP, IoT & PED Practice, Inspirisys Solutions Ltd, noted that data has become the form for rewriting businesses. Data and analytics are two important aspects, for both internal and external.


We need a data strategy and we need to store data as a corporate strategy. The data is standardized, and integrated. There is storage, security, managing, monitoring, usage, etc. There are essential parts such as data governance, where data compliance requirements have to be ensured. Spend on digital transformation is going to hit $2.5 trillion.


Inspirisys has been helping customers in the lines of business activities. We have been involved right from the initial parts of their journeys. We are helping them in AI, IoT, AR, etc. There is IoT-based remote monitoring as well. Organizations are keen on making use of data effectively so they can be better prepared for informed decisions.

Abhay Zarkar, VP, Global Practice Head, Enterprise Solutions, Tata Technologies, added that each customer brings in a fresh new look and characteristics. Tata is working with 15 EV manufacturers. The goal is: why digital transformation? It is not for an individual unit, but for company-wide. The vision of a Chinese EV maker was to be a user-driven company. They wanted digital transformation.

Customer centricity is a large focus area. In aerospace, the goal is to bring in data monetization, co-development and integration, etc. They have all technologies and PLMs. They call it the digital data thread.


Managing the stakeholders is also very important. The organization change management strategy is very important. Aligning the IT roadmap with the overall digital transformation roadmap is next. Focus should be on fundamental business values. Every step should be aligned to the bigger core.

Challenging projects

Responding to a question on challenging projects, Sundar Subramanian, President, Global Delivery, Mphasis, said that during the last three months, e-commerce has gone up to 35%. It is here to stay, and will be accelerating rapidly. We keep the customer as the central point of focus. Then, personalization becomes key, and you need data. We have the size of data. We look at the apps.


He added: “We start with small, chewable bites. We look at what can derive value for the customer. We go from the front to the back. Different customers are at different maturity levels. There are expectations from data, as well. The benefits depend on the data you have.”

Role of data

Finally, on the role of data, Subrata Das, Head of Analytics, U GRO Capital Ltd, noted that data is a good part of their business. You have to make the processes digital in nature. We need to contextualize data. In banking, if the decision of lending and giving credit is not taken correctly, it hampers the banking structure.

U GRO Capital

You also have lot of transactions happening over the weekend. We are looking at giving loans to SMEs. Some human intervention cannot be done away with.

He added: “We decided to start with a digital platform. The income assessment of any customer is digitised. We also have personal discussions with the customers. We have added further things to our digital platform. We are doing more of the things via video. These also help us in eliminating the bad customers. We have kept data at the center.”

siemens mphasis tata dun-and-bradstreet inspirisys