Optimizing IT Solutions

March 6, 2014By Behind the Shelf Blog, Industry Intuition

by Shawn Theesfeld

Does it sometimes feel like everyone else has a handle on data and technology – except you? Don’t be embarrassed if you’re overwhelmed. With so much buzz about big data, social media, content marketing, SEO, etc., you might feel like you need to be an expert on everything IT. Relax. Breaking down your company’s technology needs and finding solutions to ease your operations is easier than you think. Let’s start with that big technology beast: data.

Whether your business is B2B or B2C, the first place to focus your technology strategy is your data. “Data” is a word that’s taken on a life of its own, but to start streamlining your technology, let’s keep it simple and say that data is the information your company provides to users who want it. Maybe that’s product pricing, images, and specs; perhaps it’s research reporting or analytics. Regardless, the information your company shares with end-users has to be organized, accessible, manageable, and complete. Consider how your data going is to be used. Is it going to go on a consumer-facing website? Is it for retailer ordering? If product images are a component of your data, are they high-resolution, shot from multiple angles, and – this is important –available for every product?

If you’re feeling overwhelmed again, the good news is some of the legwork may already be done for you. Data libraries such as those compiled by HRG are available for you to purchase content from, so don’t think you have to start from scratch when embarking on strategic data organization. Lots of tools can help make this process easy on your business and your bottom line.

Once you have a live, current data interface, keep it up-to-date. Twenty-first century business expectations demand that your data be accurate and available any time, on any device, any place. Accurate and immediate data is the key to building successful relationships with clients and customers, and once you’ve taken the initial steps to begin to organize your data in strategic ways, you’ll find it’s much easier to stay ahead of necessary changes and keep your information current.

Not sure where to begin? Partners such as HRG can help find solutions to maximize your data organization and make maintaining your data simple and efficient.

In a future post, we’ll look at what to do with that data once it’s organized – how are you going to get it to your end-users?

 Shawn has over six years experience at HRG, built on previous experience working within IT departments at Land’s End and Abbott Laboratories. As Software Development Lead, Shawn has worked with clients to solve their technology challenges and make their operations run more smoothly in order to meet the ever-changing demands of end users.  

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