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What are Practical Uses for Data Analytics?

Author: Tom Hoblitzell | | June 23, 2022


If you’re involved in providing data analytics for your company, you know how valuable it can be. But, have you ever wondered how other organizations are using their data to provide value? The examples described below may give you a new appreciation for what data analytics can do.

Addressing the Nursing Shortage

Before the pandemic, there was a serious shortage of nurses, and the pandemic only made the problem worse. One U.S.-based company that recruits for hospitals and other healthcare locations found a unique application for data analytics.

The company knew that nurses around the globe are more than willing to move to the United States if they found positions and overcame the difficulties of immigration. But, the immigration issues often made it impossible for them to find international residents to fill open positions in the U.S.

The company started to use data analytics to determine where the immigration process was a problem. They tracked every nurse as they went through the process, and they were able to identify where the snags were occurring. This gave the company the opportunity to find ways to expedite the process.

The company is also using analytics to track locations that needed nurses, which allows them to prioritize their recruiting efforts.1

Managing Tangled Supply Chains

Managing a supply chain that spans continents can be a challenge, and the pandemic made that challenge even more difficult. For example, container ships were taking twice the time normally required to bring goods to U.S. ports, and deliveries of the products from a warehouse to the consumer were significantly delayed.

Some companies started to use analytics that provided scenario planning. They could then create scenarios to address a key factory shutting down, delays in deliveries by ships, and more. So, rather than trying to answer questions about the status of their supply chain or predicting what would happen, the companies were now able to see what would happen if their assumptions were wrong.1

Planning Routes for Airlines

Airlines are hard pressed to make a profit, so anything they can do to increase their efficiency is welcome. Now airlines like Southwest and Alaska Airlines are using data analytics in a big way. They’re able to predict if flights will be delayed, they can determine whether it would be better to plan direct routes or those with interim stops. Analytics can even help them determine which type of airplanes to buy.2

Addressing Crime

Police forces want to have more patrols in high-crime areas, but identifying those areas can be problematic. A few large cities in the U.S. are using historical and geographic data in predictive data analytics platforms to identify areas where crime could increase. They’ve been successful in reducing crime rates in their targeted areas.3

Transporting Large Numbers of People

When London hosted the Olympics, transportation officials knew they faced a big challenge. They wanted to ensure that they could get large numbers of people to specific locations without a hitch. As a result, they established a number of initiatives from the establishment of “Game Lanes” on local roads to the thousands of volunteers that were stationed at various points in the network to direct visitors.

Transportation officials also used data analytics, which gathered information from comparable events to predict how many people would be travelling. They were then able to plan how to keep the sea of people moving to their destinations. The transportation at the 2021 event was labeled a success.3

Choosing Customer Contact Channels

Customer surveys help many organizations tailor services to their customers. Using data analytics to draw conclusions from survey feedback can help a business in many different ways. One is determining how to plan for easy contact between customers and the company. It can answer questions like, “should we invest in a knowledge database or increase the number of agents in contact centers?

Once a company can determine their customer preferences, they’ll do a much better job of improving the customer experience.3

Planning Cities

City planning is a complex discipline. Planners must take into account a variety of factors, including traffic, supply and demand for services, existing neighborhoods, environmental issues, and more. Using analytics and modelling, city planners can make better plans based on the predictions the data analytics provide.

Improving Healthcare

There is a growing use of data analytics in healthcare. These are some of the latest applications that could revolutionize how we stay healthy.4

Diagnosing Illness: Some hospitals are now using data analytics to support diagnostics. It can highlight the issues that may be overlooked or not found right away due to high use of fax machines and overloaded physician offices. Early results have proved that patients with problems can be identified days and weeks earlier.

Improving Hospital Efficiency: Patient flow is a critical issue for hospitals. There are a number of issues, such as patients coming into an emergency room, being routed to other departments for tests, and being routed to rooms where they need the appropriate number of staff to monitor them. Some hospitals are using data analytics to forecast when demand will peak, and plan how they can arrange staffing to respond.

Self-Service Healthcare: Some doctors’ offices are so busy that it can be difficult to schedule an appointment when you need one. Apps are being used that can help patients communicate with their physician, and it may get to the point where health issues can be identified more quickly using data analytics to speed a diagnosis.

Can Datavail Help You Increase Your Use of Data Analytics?

The short answer is, “Yes.” We’ve created a free white paper, “How Companies Grow Faster with Data Analytics Managed Services” to assist you in learning more about data management and data analytics challenges. We’ve included real life case studies detailing how our managed services have helped clients get the benefits of data management and data analysis to increase their competitive edge.

Datavail is a Microsoft Gold Partner and can provide expert assistance to help you reach your goals for data management, data analytics, and data warehousing. We can provide the talent you need to add to your existing team or provide managed services for an entire project. Please contact us to discuss how we can help you respond to increasing business pressures to grow your business.

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