5-Step Process of Reliable Data Analysis for Actionable Insights | by Thomas Vato | October 2022

To make informed decisions, you need accurate and reliable data. However, collecting data is not enough – it must be analyzed properly to be useful. Data analysis can be daunting, especially if you are unfamiliar with the process. This blog post will outline a five-step process for reliable data analysis that you can use to get the most out of it. Following these steps will give you actionable insights. So read on to find out more!

Step 1 — Data Collection

Before collecting data, you need to know what you are looking for to start developing a data collection plan. You can see the goal when you know where to go. Ask yourself: how are you going to collect it? What type of data do you need?

There are several ways to do this, depending on the type you need and the resources available. Data can come from a variety of sources. For example, a company’s research may want to review financial reports, customer surveys, and employee interviews.

Data can be collected from primary or secondary sources, and it can be qualitative or quantitative. When collecting data, it is essential to consider its purpose and target audience. Each method has its own strengths and weaknesses, so it’s important to choose the right strategy for your specific research needs.

Step 2 — Data Cleanup (Most Important Step)

The truth is, anyone can analyze data. But not everyone does it properly. The actual analysis is only 20% of the work, and not everyone washes their hands before doing it, so it produces dirty and less usable data!

As it seems obvious, data is essential to make informed decisions. However, the data is often messy and unpredictable, making it difficult to extract actionable insights. As a result, we often spend a lot of time cleaning data, removing/merging duplicates, filtering out invalid or irrelevant entries, and organizing them into a usable format.

Data cleaning is an essential but tedious part of the job, occupying 50-80% of the data work.

Although data cleaning can be time consuming, it is essential to ensure that the data is accurate and useful. By cleaning it up, we can ensure we’re making decisions based on the right information, saving time and resources in the long run because you’ll trust your data when it’s accurate.

You can follow a few basic steps to clean your dataset:

Check for missing values ​​and correct them if possible.
Look for outliers and decide whether to remove or normalize them.
Make sure all your variables are in the correct format.

Data cleaning is often an overlooked step in data analysis. You should identify and correct errors in your data set if you find any. These errors can come from a variety of sources, including data entry errors, measurement errors, or incorrect values. It is essential that it be clean and ready for analysis.

And on the costs…

One of those surprises is that dirty data is inaccurate, incomplete, or inconsistent. Experian reports that, on average, companies around the world believe that 26% of their data is dirty. This contributes to huge losses. It costs the average business 15% to 25% of turnover. That’s a lot of money. Next time, if you know there’s little regard or care for data in the business, it can cost you some of your revenue directly in the trash.

other costs

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Develop and use the framework that ensures incoming data is clean. It may cost you $1 per recording. The dark side is that when dirty data enters your database, it’s not easy to catch and fix it, so it costs 10 times as much. Or even 10 times worse, imagine you send an important email to James, but the person’s real name is Susan. It’s embarrassing and you can lose your business because you’re using dirty data.

Step 3 – Data Analysis

As any good scientist knows, data is essential for uncovering trends and finding new insights. It involves reviewing and interpreting collected data to answer business questions.

Data analysis is an essential skill for any professional. When you are presented with a data set, you will first need to understand the overall structure of the data. You will then need to identify the relationships between the different variables and draw conclusions based on what you find.

Taking a large data set and breaking it down into smaller, more manageable pieces is key to making good decisions because you can focus on one aspect of the data and see how it relates to the big picture.

The data analysis process can take time. Yet, when done correctly, it can give businesses a competitive advantage by providing actionable insights that can be used to improve products and services.

Data analysis inspects, transforms, and models data to uncover useful insights, suggest conclusions, and support decision-making.

With careful planning and creativity, data analysis can be an enjoyable and productive part of any project.

Step 4 – Data Visualization

Data visualization is the fourth step in the data analysis process, so it shouldn’t be earlier. This is where you draw an image of the data.

It’s about taking complex data and communicating it in a way that’s easy to understand. By using graphs and images, data visualization can make patterns and trends more understandable. This also makes it a great tool for deeper exploration of data and information.

A big mistake to visualize the data without cleaning it first. You will see pretty graphics but not the truth.

The ability to effectively visualize information is becoming increasingly important in a data-driven world.

Data visualization is the process of creating visual representations of data. He can communicate complex ideas or large amounts of information in a clean, concise, and aesthetic way.

Data visualization is a powerful tool that can help us see the world in new ways. This can reveal patterns and trends that would otherwise be difficult to spot. It can also help us compare different sets of data and see relationships we might not have anticipated.

It is increasingly used in fields as diverse as medicine, finance and weather forecasting. Data visualization can be used for a variety of applications, from data science to analyzing business performance.

Step 5 — Implementation (Data Driven Actions)

Understanding the data is important, but knowing how to act is another. Data analysis and visualization enable businesses to make informed decisions based on evidence rather than guesswork. By understanding what the data is saying, companies can adjust their strategies accordingly.

Of course, data analysis and visualization are only effective if used correctly. After all, what’s the point of doing all that work if you’re not going to use the information you’ve extracted?

In today’s world, acting on data is more important than ever. With so much information available at your fingertips, it can be overwhelming to make decisions without guidance. Of course, data is not always perfect and there will always be some uncertainty in any decision. But by taking data into account when making decisions, you can reduce the risk of making mistakes and increase the chances of achieving our goals.

The bottom line is that data analysis and visualization are powerful tools, but they’re only as good as the decisions they inform. I hope this article has given you a better understanding of how to perform data analysis and what steps are involved. By following the five steps of data collection, cleaning, analysis, visualization, and implementation, you can improve your understanding of your customer base and detect patterns that would otherwise remain hidden. So when it comes time to act on your data, be sure to do so with purpose and intent.

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