Are you a data hunter? Got one on your team? It’s not enough to gather data — you need to actively hunt for it. When it comes to data, especially according to the decision makers asking for it, there is never enough!

Decision makers today want to be insights-driven. They know they need to understand their customers to better serve them and better understand their operations to improve them. To do this, they want to harness data and derive insights to create differentiation and competitive advantage. They use their internal data — their transaction data, customer engagement data, and performance metrics — but that’s not enough.

That means finding new data sources . . . In today’s competitive environments, decision makers want to get any insights they can — from any source. As the CDO of a midsized US bank realized, “With our own data, we can only look internally. We need to see industry benchmarks, regional trends, and what waves we can ride on.” Today, 56% of decision makers tell us they’ve launched initiatives to improve their use of external data; another 20% are planning to do so in the next 12 months. Over three-fourths of decision makers want to find new external data sources: weather, news, social media data, demographic data, census data, and other socioeconomic indicators. They need more: a little local knowledge, a heads-up on what’s to come, the inside scoop — anywhere they can find that differentiating nugget.

. . . yet data teams can’t keep up. As the use of data spreads across companies — from IT to marketing to sales to operations — data teams can’t keep up with requests for external data. What was once covered by a small data team can’t scale to meet the new demand. What used to be just a request for an additional license to access a standard data provider has now become an exercise in hunting for new data sources. In fact, the role of “data hunter” has emerged.

Forrester can help. Our new research series, “Think You’re Doing Data Sourcing Right? Think Again,” provides business insights professionals a guide to external data sourcing, helping them scale to meet growing demand. The reports provide best practices gleaned from interviews with data and analytics professionals and offer an overview of the new data landscape.

Take a look at the new research:

Forrester Infographic: Think You’re Doing Data Sourcing Right? Think Again

The Insights Professional’s Guide To External Data Sourcing (Forrester report)

Need External Data? Explore The New Data Landscape (Forrester report)