According to the Small Business Administration, there are about 30.7 million small enterprises in the United States. In the year 2017 alone, about 241,000 small establishments launched into various sectors of the economy. These companies are sprouting out in the digital era, where data management is every business’s lifeline.
Is your small business finding it hard to cope with the demands of computerized data? You’re not alone. Most small businesses are still working around their digital transformation strategies.
If you currently feel like managing computerized data is a significant challenge, these data management tips are for you.
Read on to learn more about data management for small businesses
Why Is Data So Important?
Today, businesses gather loads of data from diverse sources to help them support a myriad of functions. Without the right data management tools, it may not be easy to utilize such data to your firm’s advantage. Data within a small business is critical to support the process of decision making.
Businesses with the right data management strategies can also develop better problem-solving approaches. Further, data helps small businesses understand and measure performance and to factor in improvements. With adequate data, you’ll be able to analyze and visualize all your business functions.
Based on these critical benefits of data to a business, it’s clear that your small enterprise needs to develop multiple sources of data to support your firm’s operations. However, without the right data management tips, you might have the data but fail to utilize it to your advantage.
So how can you go about small business data management? Here are data management tips that every enterprise yearning for success must adopt.
1. Establish Reliable Data Storage
It would help if you operated with the end in mind. How will you store both structured and unstructured data? Before you collect data, it would help to consider your data storage options.
You might need to consider space as a determinant when settling for a suitable data storage alternative. It would help to find storage options that will keep your data well-organized and easily accessible. Settling for the best data storage alternative is the best place to start your data management process.
2. Ensure You Are Compliant
Businesses are changing in their approach to data management. Most enterprises are keen to ensure compliance with the existing data rules and regulations. As such, you need to ensure strict adherence to the General Data Protection Regulations.
Compliance can help ensure that all your data management processes are per the set stipulations. This will help you avoid the pitfalls of poor data management. Non-compliance may cost your business dearly both financially and from a legal perspective.
3. Security Is Everything
There’s no better way to underscore the importance of data security in your company. It would be best if you considered the highest levels of protection for your data at all costs. Whether it’s virtually or physically, you must ensure that you have all the measures to ensure safety.
One of the most secure ways to deal with personal and customer data is to ensure encryption. You can also consider multi-layered security systems to enhance your data safety. Other measures that might help you provide protection include using firewalls on all your computerized devices.
Using anti-virus software is among the other critical data management tips that can help keep your business data safe. Finally, it would be best to consider multi-factor authentication for all your emails and other business accounts.
4. Visualize Your Data
One of the best ways to manage your data is to ensure that your reporting is engaging and interactive. This is only achievable with the top of the class visualization tools. Data visualization tools help you analyze your data, gain critical insights, and to present stunning visuals from the analyzed data.
With visualization tools such as Knowi, you have a diverse set of data stack that includes elasticsearch analytics. Such tools help you in the visualization of data across multiple indexes. This can be a perfect way to accelerate data visualization processes.
5. Back up Everything
Are you keen on enhancing your small business data management? Well, you need to start by backing up all your data. It would help if you practiced the utmost diligence when it comes to the management of your backup systems.
Backups come in handy in case of systems crashes or failures in your primary storage. Your small business is prone to both natural and human made disasters that might corrupt it. Backing up your data in the cloud can be a sure way to keep your information safe.
You might also consider other options, such as saving data on external hard drives. Storing duplicate data in USB drives or additional network-attached storage can also be a safe backup option.
6. Homogenize Your Data Entry Policies
Nothing serves your small business data management needs better than having a homogenized data entry approach. The slightest mistake in the entry of data can be potentially catastrophic. This informs the need to adopt a standardized data entry procedure in all the departments.
For small businesses to achieve such critical standardization outcomes, there might be a need to invest in training. You might want to ensure that every individual who has direct access to your data is well-trained.
When it comes to small business data management, always remember that the devil is in the detail. A slight mistake in your data entry protocol may potentially spell disaster.
7. Consider Regular Maintenance Schedules
It’s not enough to set up a data storage system and backups. You need to ensure regular maintenance schedules. This will be the first step towards having an error-free and low-risk data management database.
Your small business database is vulnerable to decays over time. As such, you need to consider frequent cleanup protocols to minimize the risk of a breach. With regular maintenance schedules, you can achieve accurate and secure information systems.
Your Approach to Data Management Can Make or Break Your Small Business
Your business depends substantively on data to make critical business decisions. You also need data to understand various business processes. As such, it would help if you considered these data management tips to utilize your data fully.
Once you establish sufficient data storage, you only need to put a robust security structure and a backup to keep your information safe and secure. With the right analytic tools, your business will be ready to soar.
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