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Is data a liability or asset for supply chain departments?

por Lauren Dubinsky, Senior Reporter | April 09, 2021
From the April 2021 issue of HealthCare Business News magazine


The first step is digital connectivity, which involves extracting data from systems and integrating it seamlessly across the healthcare organization. Once that is achieved, organizations can then look into implementing artificial intelligence tools to analyze that data.

However, a common hurdle that Bradley encounters is the lack of a data strategy. He stated that less than 10 percent of organizations have what he calls an “articulated data strategy.”

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“I think part of that has to do with the fact that they thought they did [have a data strategy],” he added. “They may have had a big data strategy, a digital strategy or an analytic strategy, but those things, though they are strategic in nature, are not the same.”

A true data strategy involves “an integrated set of guiding principles that foster a set of behaviors and guide decisions that allow an organization to better govern and manage data assets throughout their full lifecycle”, said Bradley.

“When we look at it from this vantage point, it becomes abundantly clear that the vast majority of organizations don't have it because they haven't really thought about it,” said Bradley.

He stressed that organizations need to think about the data they already have and the data they might need to acquire in the future.

He referred to one source of data as “breadcrumbs” because it is fragments of data within an organization, that in isolation, have little to no meaning. However, this data can yield insights when those “crumbs” are stitched together with AI tools.

There is also derivative data, which involves taking one data element and extracting additional value from it. And lastly, there is proprietary data or data that only the organization has or has access to.

Other organizations don't know that those data elements exist or that there are sources of that type of data. That allows the organization to gain an advantage and is an example of how data can move from being a liability to an asset.

“[This journey is] part innovation, but it's also part continuous improvement and checking to make sure we have everything we need before we go on this journey,” concluded Bradley. “Do we have the right human talent? Do we have the right technical infrastructure? Do we have the appropriate strategy? And most importantly, do we have the right stakeholders on the team to get us there?”

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