I Have All This Data, Now What?

Restaurant brand executives understand the importance of data capture and have systems in place to collect and track numerous metrics. It is becoming clear that reviewing and analyzing data related to surges in revenue is paramount to understand what it was that drove that surge. Why? If you don’t know what caused your good fortune, how can you replicate the results?

As we move into a new decade, restaurant brands will need to shift from data capture to data analysis, insight, application, and learning. It will be imperative for brands to know what they need for visibility into sales numbers for the week, month or quarter; why the data is unfolding the way it is; how to leverage it for competitive advantage; and most importantly, find ways to plan and deliver strategic growth. 

Below are four ways to advance your data initiatives:   

Assign a Leader and Identify Key Stakeholders

Every other area of the business needs a dedicated lead, so why would data and insights be any different? If your brand isn’t large enough to warrant a full-time appointment, identifying a team lead and allocation of resources must be determined for tools, training and time. While user-friendly analytics platforms are a requirement to see behind the curtain of your restaurant data, the person in the committed role will be the one to drive your data and insights strategy. After the lead is determined, identify key stakeholders in the organization who are utilizing data or can benefit from the insights.

Share Your Findings

Insights can’t be acted upon if they are siloed by department, so share it across your organization. Creating a reporting rhythm is essential in order to identify and reconcile goals and answer questions like, “Who ‘needs to know’ as it pertains to certain insights? How often should we be reviewing these areas and who should be included? Which insights are most actionable for us in the short term or long term?” A data lead will provide a holistic view to ensure the insights are effectively disseminated across all areas of the businesses to develop meaningful next steps.

Take Action or Not

Insights without thought-out actions and next steps will guarantee diminishing returns. While sometimes the best action will actually be no action, to grow it is imperative your brand is routinely testing new strategies derived from the insights your organization is collecting.  

Data Needs to Become Your Brand’s Beacon of Knowledge

When looking across any company there are often siloed efforts and siloed solutions as departments look to their specific needs vs. the brand’s global vision.  Having a single source of data-informed analytics allows people from every department to seek answers knowing they are basing their learnings off the same data source.  Numbers don’t lie and they won’t cloud the answer with emotional logic, or lack thereof. Let the data provide your basis of decision-making.  Your brand will be smarter for it.  

Restaurant brands wanting to stay ahead of their competitors must make the shift from data capture to data analysis, insight, application, and learning. This mindset and cultural shift toward widespread adoption will be the fuel behind future growth.