How to grow your business in uncertain times

Henrica Westhoeve
March 30, 2023 - Reading Time 3 minutes

After the corona pandemic, the Russia-Ukraine war, the energy crisis and rising commodity prices, the economically uncertain times do not seem to be over. Recently, the first bank in the United States suffered and we are most likely on the verge of a new economic crisis. As consumers, but certainly also as companies, we are facing a suspenseful time in the coming months. How can you grow despite this uncertainty? Dun & Bradstreet conducted research.

Resilience and data

Resilience appears to be the key word. This was shown in a survey conducted by Dun & Badstreet among more than 3,300 decision makers worldwide. To have this resilience, understanding your organization is the most important thing. In this, data is the fundamental component to understanding your business at all levels. 77% of respondents believe that data plays a crucial role to survive these uncertain times. Data is used not only as a way to reduce risk, but also to proactively increase revenue, according to 37% of respondents.

Despite the fact that a large number of respondents recognize that data is crucial, an even larger proportion (80%) have difficulty dealing with it. Consider the many types of data out there, as well as the sheer volume that companies have to work with on a daily basis. With the large growth in the amount of data that companies have to deal with, this is not surprising. In this, Master Data Management plays a big role. MDM is becoming increasingly important to deal with these increasing data flows. By applying a consistent MDM strategy, your data becomes uniform, up-to-date, and most importantly, accurate.

Interesting read: What is Master Data Management and how does it work?

Challenges and threats

Decision makers are particularly concerned about rising energy prices and the challenges associated with them (43%). When looking at sectors such as retail and manufacturing, this percentage rises further to as much as 55% and 53%. Nationwide, these percentages vary even further. For example, we see that in the United States concerns about energy prices are very low (27%), but are very high in countries like Poland at over 60%. This is an example of geopolitics. Poland, like the Netherlands, Belgium and other countries, imported a lot of gas from Russia until last year because there is little to no gas production at home. Something that isn't the case in the United States.

Apart from external challenges such as rising prices, there are also many challenges that companies struggle with internally. For example, increasing data flows create challenges in ensuring data quality or keeping data up-to-date, but 37% of decision makers are also increasing their fear of data breaches and cyber attacks.

Download: The full report: Increasing Business Resilience

Datadriven resilience

As we read earlier, there are many factors that you as a company cannot do much about. Therefore, in these times, it is all the more important to focus on what you can do as a company. The survey found that more than a quarter of respondents believe that the quality of their data has the greatest impact on their ability to maintain or strengthen resilience over the next three years. Consider, for example, how to best use existing data to improve your customer service or automate and accelerate processes.

In summary, it is clear that rising prices are a threat to businesses. And while it is clear that leaders worldwide recognize the critical role of data, many struggle with data quality. 32% of leaders say they find it challenging to harness the full potential of their data while 23% are unsure of how to extract maximum value from their enterprise data. The survey shows that Master Data Management can provide the helping hand for the resilience needed in the coming years to grow as a business.

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