Global Survey: 9 out of 10 Business Leaders Say Data Is More Important Since Onset of COVID-19


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SAN DIEGO, Calif. – Oct. 26, 2020 – In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, organizations across private industries have become more reliant on data and analytics as a way to better understand and react to the continuously changing global business landscape. A new research report, commissioned by Teradata (NYSE: TDC), and conducted by independent research firm Vanson Bourne in September 2020, explores global executive sentiment around data analytics and the crucial role this asset is likely to play as industries eye the path to recovery.

Trust in Data

The onset of the pandemic ignited a thirst for information that has also exposed how data can be inconclusive, misunderstood and even abused. The weakness and missteps of data-use in response to COVID-19 has resulted in greater scrutiny from the top-down around data accuracy and trust, as well as a concern that a lack of cloud resources is impacting decision-making.

  • 77% of IT decision makers say data accuracy is under greater scrutiny within their organization due to how data was used in relation to COVID-19. China, at 93%, was most concerned about the accuracy of their data, followed by Germany (80%) and the US (77%).
  • While 53% of business leaders overall admit trust in data was challenged due to COVID-19 data follies, there is a notable disparity in sentiment when comparing the US (60%) and the UK (28%).
  • Nearly half (47%) of business leaders agree decision-making is being hampered amid the current COVID-19 crisis due to a lack of cloud presence, with 66% of respondents in China feeling the strain.

Data is Key to Recovery

Traditionally, organizations have relied on data and analytics to glean insights and better understand the continuously changing business and technology landscape. With the full scope of COVID-19’s impact across every vertical becoming clearer, business leaders are recognizing the necessity of scalable, trustworthy data and are using cloud technologies to survive and adapt in a post-pandemic world.

  • 82% of business leaders are now accelerating decisions to move data and key business functions to the cloud as a direct result of the pandemic.
  • According to 9 out of 10 (90%) respondents, there is greater realization of the increasing importance of data in the decision-making process since the onset of COVID-19.
  • Out of the five countries surveyed, China was most focused on the cloud, with 99% of business leaders accelerating plans to expedite their move to the cloud, while 59% of business leaders in the UK appeared skeptical.

“COVID-19 has completely upended the roadmaps of businesses across every industry, forcing leaders to re-evaluate how they view, use and maximize data to pivot and re-establish the path forward,” said Steve McMillan, President and CEO of Teradata. “The companies that will survive – and ultimately thrive – will be the ones that realize data is a key asset for recovery and a competitive advantage to drive the future of their business. This is Teradata’s purpose – to transform how businesses work and people live through the power of data.”

Data is Strategic to Our Future

With recovery at the forefront of business leaders’ minds, data has emerged as the priority asset for nearly all IT decision makers in building the foundation to make it possible – and ensure they’re prepared for any future disruptions.

  • 88% of IT decision makers view data as a strategic asset to their business, while 95% agree data is an essential asset and more importantly, key to recovery and the path moving forward.
  • Global sentiment about how data will inform future efforts was nearly unanimous, with China (100%) being the biggest advocates of data and its role in recovery, followed by the US (97%), Germany and Japan at 93% and then France and the UK at 92%.


In September 2020, Teradata commissioned independent market research company Vanson Bourne to conduct a quantitative research study of IT decision makers across the U.S., UK, France, Germany, China and Japan. Respondents were from organizations with 1,000 employees or more, and with a global annual revenue of more than $250 million, within private sectors including financial services and IT, technology and telecoms. Interviews were conducted online using a rigorous multi-level screening process to ensure that only suitable candidates were given the opportunity to participate.

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