Data Viz: Trendy and What Else?
The fun part about working at SwissPeaks is that due to being recognised as creative and innovative in our data solutions, we do find our portfolio of capabilities is growing year on year. The hot topic we’re focusing on and grown to be experts in over time is data visualisation - or data viz for the trendier people.
Over the last couple of years, we’ve been building bespoke online analysis solutions for a range of different clients and have quite a nice portfolio growing. Our latest incarnations for Les Transports Publics Genevois (TPG) and Safaricom have developed well and soon, via our website and other digital marketing outlets, we aim to start showcasing our solutions within the beautiful world of data viz.
As trendy as it may be, data viz is not just a pretty face. Data visualisation, stored and implemented correctly, is only as useful as the data behind it; greater emphasis needs to be placed on the understanding of quality control, data transfer and data structures. SwissPeaks have spent countless years in the collection, collation and management of the market research data paradigm and never a day goes by where we aren’t transforming data from raw and unqualified information to structured and useful data architectures that integrate into visualisation packages seamlessly and efficiently.
The right data foundations
A chart, graph, pie or radar are, as we see them, interpretations of the underlying data. For many businesses, there is an assumption that the underlying data is correct or that the time (and cost ratio) associated with making sure data is high quality and credible is incidental. Sadly, it’s not the case and as we spend around 50% of our working time making sure data is credible. When referring to data in this way, we are always looking at the quality of the data structure – this is so important.
Data, be it respondent, big data (such as web-traffic) or otherwise can be stored in a surprisingly large amount of ways. From older CSV (Comma Separated Values), ascii encoded and pure text solutions to newer relational database, cube, JSON and XML – and finding the best data structure and data storage mechanism can have a significant effect on resulting usability.
In data visualisation via web-apps, bandwidth and processing power are limitations in a very literal sense; a bad data architecture takes longer to process and visualise - errors and outliers notwithstanding – and possibly won’t even talk to your system! Knowing which architecture to invest in can save unwarranted cost, and help to deliver a more efficient means of decision making.
With experience and understanding of data structures (and associated architectures), SwissPeaks specialise in conversion from raw data into industry compliant structures and storage mechanisms, and ensure that this data is superlatively clean and qualified.
Built for speed
Digital dynamic data visualisation is there to make the decision making process as quick and informed as possible. Whilst static analysis has its place, visualisation can benefit a company by allowing them to drill into the data they need the instant they need it, instead of outputting every permutation of every possible variable the data contains. As a real world example, SwissPeaks have developed an OAT (Online Analysis Tool) for Safaricom, a large telecommunications company working across the African continent.
Safaricom has stores in most large cities throughout Africa and the data they receive back from customer questionnaires helps to inform them of service satisfaction and average customer queue/query times. Prior to using the OAT, Safaricom manually collated this data and analysis was done using spreadsheets and pivot tables. Through the use of market research industry compliant data architectures, and conversion into a high-speed relational database, SwissPeaks has enabled Safaricom to dynamically generate customised, selection-filterable charts that look at thousands of records of data within a second. The resulting graphics and generated respondent base description tables can be downloaded in an instant and inserted into any report or presentation.
What’s the point?
Data visualisation done correctly, with a solid underlying data structure, can convey the information your data holds in a more understandable way, saving time and allowing important decisions to be made with greater insight. For a data visualisation tool to be useful, it has to be easy and fast to use and able to reliably output to the image and document formats of the user’s company.
A smart business appreciates the significance of insight drawn from credible market research data and the value of getting to that data quickly and cost effectively. SwissPeaks as a full service market research agency prides itself in being able to offer these key competencies.
We’re happy to send you out a demo of one of our OATs. Feel free to get in touch and as you will see from the speed and simplicity, you can house a lot of data under one roof and make it easily accessible providing its foundation - the data rchitecture - is sound.