Verizon Connect warns how firms fail to see data as the new oil

25 Sep 2018

Image: Welcomia/Shutterstock

Businesses with fleets of vehicles are failing to leverage data to drive productivity gains.

Despite professing that digital transformation is a core leadership priority, businesses in Ireland are running out of road when it comes to harnessing the power of data.

That’s the view of Verizon Connect in Ireland, the mobile workforce technology firm formerly known as Fleetmatics, which was acquired by US telecoms giant Verizon for $2.4bn two years ago.

‘With data being the fuel powering digital transformation, now is the time to turn business insights into genuine opportunity’

Founded in an office above a supermarket in Templeogue, Fleetmatics grew to become a business listed on the New York Stock Exchange.

Today, the Verizon-owned company employs 250 people in Ireland at the former Microsoft building in Sandyford.

Fail to do data, prepare to fail

Man in checkered jacket and white shirt with US flag in background.

Derek Bryan, vice-president of sales, Verizon Connect EMEA and APAC. Image: Johnny Bambury/Fennell Photography

The survey conducted for Verizon Connect by iReach found that close to seven in 10 business leaders have not made harnessing the power of data a key priority for the coming year. Not only that, but four out of 10 have not even considered how they can leverage the data within their fleet of company vehicles to drive productivity.

This is despite 81pc of business leaders believing digital transformation could have a positive impact on their business processes.

It is therefore hard to see these business leaders making any gains when the fuel in their tanks – the data – is not being processed right. Worse, safety and security were found to only be a concern for one in 10 business decision-makers.

Derek Bryan, vice-president of sales for Verizon Connect in EMEA and APAC, said that when it comes to reviewing data and getting return on investment, key areas of insight from data include analysing driver behaviour such as hard-cornering. Crucially, he said, it is about turning this data into actionable results.

“With new technologies transforming the way people, vehicles and things move throughout the world, it is positive to see that almost seven in 10 Irish business leaders are looking towards data to drive future growth and competitiveness.

“However, despite a widespread acknowledgement on the need to undergo digital transformation, our research points to a worrying ‘say-do’ gap which has emerged amongst business leaders. More than four in 10 businesses have not even considered harnessing the power of data from their most heavily utilised resource: their fleet of company vehicles. “

To close this gap, Bryan said that leaders must set out a clear strategy as to how existing data across all of the business can be leveraged to deliver efficiencies and enhance the customer experience.

“With data being the fuel powering digital transformation, now is the time to turn business insights into genuine opportunity that can accelerate growth both now and into the future.”

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years