Are Web Governance Oriented Organizations “Better” at Using Digital Analytics?


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Continuing on with Part 4 of this year’s Profiles in Analytics – Does Web Governance Drive Analytics…or get the whole analysis, survey data and digital analytics profiles at Semphonic.

Are Web Governance Oriented Organizations “Better” at Using Digital Analytics?

Enterprise Web governance may contribute to high quality digital analytics for the enterprise, but it does not guarantee success. At the same time, lack of enterprise Web governance doesn’t necessarily doom an analytics initiative to failure. However, programs seem to stop short on delivering all that they can deliver.

In both cases, analytics programs appear to be primarily centralized entities that focus on dashboard development, reporting, providing analysis and recommendations. While there is service to multiple stakeholders, the lack of time dedicated to training, encouraging self service and creating analytics standards that may be used throughout the organization fosters a somewhat isolated digital analytics culture. So, while multiple stakeholders are potentially served through distribution of reports, the value of what’s being conveyed in the reports may or may not be understood.

The Details

If you serve more stakeholders more efficiently does this mean that you are providing a high quality analytics product? Perhaps, but not necessarily. This is like saying that a Super Size meal is better than a 4 oz filet mignon. Quantity doesn’t mean quality.

To determine the level of quality, the research focused on three elements:

  • Digital analytics program priorities of digital analytics managers
  • Whether the program priorities were in line with senior management
  • Priority tasks of the digital analytics teams

Top priorities. In looking at alignment in priorities between digital analytics managers and their management, it appears there is actually more alignment among those in organizations without Web governance councils.

It is altogether positive that there is fairly strong agreement between digital analytics managers and senior management that the primary mission is delivering recommendations and analysis, even if it is not completely equivalent.

There is a fairly strong sentiment among senior leadership around the importance of developing dashboards and reports in organizations that have Web governance. This suggests that there are a number of senior leaders who believe that success in analytics is based on getting reports into as many peoples’ hands as possible.

But there is more to this story…

Top tasks. When asked about the tasks the analytics team spends the most time on, there is an interesting disconnect from the goals and perceptions described previously…the prominence of implementation and maintenance of the analytics tools, as seen below.

Neither Web analytics managers nor senior leadership wants to consider that this is a top priority. However, lack of recognition of the importance of this task is akin to driving a car and not wanting to get it serviced regularly. Negligence can catch up in a number of ways. In the scenario of mutual denial, analytics teams may not have sufficient resources to provide more valuable insight from analytics. However, the question is whether they make the business case to request these resources. Conversely, senior leadership may not be aware of the amount of time and effort required to maintain and improve the Web analytics implementation.

Finishing among the top three tasks analytics teams spend their time on, and what also doesn’t show up as a priority is “conducting ad hoc analysis.”

Like implementation and maintenance tasks, there would be agreement that this would not be a priority; however, because so much time is spent on this task, it takes away from potentially other more valuable tasks. It is worth noting that organizations without Web governance indicated that their team spends more time on this than any other task. However, this activity actually occurs more often as a second and third task than non-Web governance organizations. Reasons for this can range from positive to negative: a focus on conducting deep dive analyses, “drive by” requests, weak or non-existent request management and evaluation process, or a need to improve quality and distribution of dashboards.

Regardless of whether the organization is driven by Web governance or no not, the tasks that could potentially drive high value throughout the enterprise are given the lowest priority among both Web analytics teams and senior leadership. These tasks also get the least amount of analytics team attention:

  • Train and educate on the use of analytics
  • Provide strategic direction on the use of analytics
  • Create organizational analytics standards
  • Developing culture of self-service analytics

Next week: Has Digital Analytics Made It into the Mainstream of the Digital Production Lifecycle?

Get the entire research at Semphonic.

Republished with author's permission from original post.

Phil Kemelor
In his role as Vice President of Strategic Consulting Services, Kemelor helps companies deploy and use web analytics successfully. Kemelor, a noted author and speaker on web analytics, is a former journalist, marketing executive and 14-year Internet veteran. He has 10 years of experience in web analytics and previously headed the web analytic program at Bell Atlantic. He co-founded and served as Principal Consultant for the web analytics consultancy at NetGenesis, one of the first web analytic software firms and led engagements with a number of Fortune 500 firms.


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