This week, Forrester published Data Communications Will Make Or Break Your Data Literacy Efforts. In this first research report on this topic, clients will discover how closing gaps in communication can ignite insights-driven decision-making. This content will resonate most with people leaders or change agents who are struggling to transport insights-related messages from the top of the leadership chain to the “boots on the ground” employees and vice versa.

The core audience of this research is Forrester Decisions’ clients in the roles of chief technology officer (CTO), CIO, chief analytics officer (CAO), and chief data officer (CDO), but many other organizational roles, including technology architecture and delivery (TAD), enterprise collaboration software, and internal communications policy-makers and employee experience (EX) curators, will benefit from understanding why data communications (DataComs) matters. If you have any type of product (data or otherwise), read this report to reconsider how you address internal communications across various levels within your organization to drive adoption.

Here’s a quick preview of what DataComs is, why should you care, why you should read the report, and next steps.

So, What Is DataComs?

Forrester defines DataComs as:

The understanding and optimization of communication channels and mediums that insight professionals can leverage to change user perceptions and behaviors in a psychologically safe environment. It includes a collaborative mix of internal, external, and interpersonal company communications, committees, and communities.

Why Should You Care About DataComs?

Awareness and optimization of how well your insight team members communicate and collaborate is a precursor to enterprise data literacy, user adoption, and every other business process that includes the word “data” in front of it. According to Forrester’s Future Of Work Survey, 2021, 40% of employees disagreed when asked if they thought they communicated well with colleagues about technology, and only 29% agreed. As insight professionals chase 20% revenue growth from insight-driven decision-making, data and analytics leaders cannot afford to ignore potential gaps in communication.

What Pain Points Does DataComs Address?

We find that despite investment in data literacy and data storytelling training, employees are not effectively using internal insight products. This results in a game of telephone, a lack of adoption of dashboards and insights content, and the blame game when it comes to business results. This gap between data literacy and data storytelling is what DataComs can plug to ensure that the last mile of insights-driven decision-making is well thought through. Our research further explores:

  • The role DataComs plays in activating your data culture.
  • What types of communications might be trivial one moment and vital the next.
  • Who owns DataComs.
  • How to measure DataComs.
  • Narrative descriptions for the three “coms” of DataComs.

    The Three "Coms" of DataComs
    The Three “Coms” of DataComs

Now What? Potential Next Steps.

Connect with me through an inquiry to discuss data communications and how it relates to your data storytelling and data literacy improvement efforts. Fail forward, my friends!