Operational Efficiency: A Must-Improve Metric

Business Transformation|5 Minute Read

Operational Efficiency: A Must-Improve Metric

Operational efficiency is one of those metrics every C-suite knows is important to their companies’ long-term success. And one that needs to be regularly addressed. Case in point:

A 2019 MuleSoft survey found 77% of companies executing digital transformation initiatives cited increased efficiency across their businesses as a primary goal.

To some organizations, though, operational efficiency is strictly a financial metric.

For instance, they implement cost-cutting measures (e.g., reduce overhead, streamline the supply chain) to save on operating costs. Or, they roll out new business models and/or products or services to increase revenue and improve profit margins.

The truth is operational efficiency is a more complex, multi-faceted metric.

It’s not just about being more cost-effective or growing one’s bottom line. (Though those are obviously important areas to track performance on and routinely improve.)

It’s also about elevating the efficiency and productivity of each team. In particular, growth-focused teams that interact with customers and/or are accountable for business growth.

Improving operational efficiency: An objective for many business leaders

Companies across industries regularly improve efficiency through a variety of measures and changes: from adjusting their resource utilization (i.e., team structure and/or responsibilities) to revising business processes (e.g., how teams execute).

But an increasingly common way for organizations to increase productivity — and ensure high-quality output from all their growth teams — is to upgrade the tech tools teams utilize.

For instance, many enterprises believe a centralized database can help. Specifically, one that gives teams a ‘complete’ view of individuals in their database ecosystem.

In fact, 2019 Experian research discovered 38% of large-scale companies want to attain a single customer view to enhance the operational efficiency of their growth teams.

  • Translation? They want a single source of truth that unifies and democratizes all data.
  • The problem? Many execs don’t even realize there’s a need for such a solution.
  • Why? They can’t see there may be a better way to carry out everyday business activities.

That is to say, these leaders fail to realize there are barriers that prevent marketing, analytics, ecommerce, and other business technology users from being as productive as possible.

Notably, many neglect the siloed data sitting throughout their organizations. Or, they simply don’t even notice any challenges related to fragmented and/or missing customer data.

The C-suites that do recognize this issue have resolved it by revamping their tech stacks to enable teams to better engage individuals and deliver more compelling experiences.

One popular tech stack addition today is a pure-play customer data platform (CDP) like BlueConic, which gives tech users direct access to data they want in the format they need.

operational efficiency

How a customer data platform streamlines operations — and elevates ROI

Return on investment is measured in numerous ways. Most of which tie back to revenue. But not all ROI metrics are fiscal. Others — like operational efficiency — are strategic in nature.

Improving tactical metrics — customer lifetime value, cart abandonment rates, email clickthroughs, etc. — will never not be important. But, by taking a step back to enhance how your teams get work done, you subsequently grow the tactical metrics too.

BlueConic customer goba Sports Group was one such company that altered its customer engagement approach and technology stack to realize better conversions with its advertising and marketing program — and become more efficient in the process:

  • The problem: Data silos. The goba team realized it had first-party data across multiple platforms, none of which was synced in a uniform, easily accessible and usable manner. Without the ability to unify that data, its targeted advertising would continue to be inefficient — and it would waste valuable ad spend.
  • The solution: The company recognized it needed a “profile-based aggregation tool that we can use to connect offline CRM data with all of our online activity.” That led the business to BlueConic. Using our platform, goba began resolving customer identities and creating persistent, individual-level profiles for each contact in its database. These profiles included merged data from online and offline transactions and engagement and, therefore, finally gave the organization the single customer view it long desired and needed to better convert shoppers.
  • The result: A big jump in ROAS (59%), a sizable drop in customer acquisition costs (24%) — and a far more efficient, streamlined, and scalable customer engagement strategy.

No (over)reliance or dependencies on external agencies or in-house technical stakeholders like IT or data science and more time to experiment with and optimize its cross-channel marketing efforts: That is goba Sports Group’s efficiency ‘win’ with our CDP.

What’s more, the company was even able to consolidate its technology stack.

Thanks to the business intelligence reporting dashboards offered in BlueConic, the company could get rid of its BI tool, thus saving the organization an additional cost.

Operational efficiencies can come in many forms. Yours will depend on your business model, target market, company size, and other factors unique to your organization.

But there is just one solution that can help the aforementioned teams (among others) realize their distinct version of efficiency: a pure-play customer data platform such as BlueConic.

how to improve operational efficiency

Embracing operational efficiency as a company: The path to sustainable success

The main goal of improving operational efficiency isn’t just to make growth-focused teams more effective in their day-to-day and streamline their core activities: from segmentation and analysis to predictive modeling and cross-channel activation.

It’s also about contributing to the overall ‘operational excellence’ of their companies.

It’s a competitive business climate out there. Regardless of your industry or niche. And greater efficiency can be what distinguishes your organization from your competitors.

Ultimately, it’s on C-suites to decide how to best structure their teams, business processes, and technology stacks in order to realize both better outcomes and greater efficiency.

Regarding tech, in particular, they must make well-researched investments and successfully manage change around those investments to set their growth teams up for success.

That means they must consider the long-term ROI from those investments and how they can make their teams and businesses at large more resilient in ‘down’ periods. (See: 2020.)

With a CDP that unifies all customer data, streamlines critical tasks, helps tech users execute without the need for technical support, and gives growth teams the agility and flexibility they need to thrive, business leaders can rest assured they’ve charted the right course to increase operational efficiency and help their companies continue to grow.

Download our eBrief to discover how your company can improve operational efficiency for all growth-focused teams with a pure-play customer data platform like BlueConic.

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