As a resource, data has been described as ‘the new oil’. But as with oil, something has to happen to it to make it useful. For treasurers, data analytics is a discipline that can no longer be left to the IT team. We explore the reasons why.
The numbers related to data production are mind-boggling. The amount of captured data already generated has been estimated by the World Economic Forum at 44 zettabytes. That’s 40 times more bytes than there are stars in the observable universe. By 2025, the daily generation of data is expected to reach 463 exabytes globally.
The increasing importance of knowing how to handle this immense resource is driving change in treasury. It is ushering in the discipline of data analytics, shifting it from being a function of IT towards one that professional treasurers must also grasp as an essential tool of the trade.
Increasing treasury complexity, the march of digitalisation, regulatory compliance, pressing issues around liquidity and working capital management, increasing competition – all of these should now figure as drivers for individual treasurers to enhance their data analytics skill sets. Indeed, it’s rapidly becoming an essential marriage of professional and technological competences because failing to correctly interpret the right data may now be viewed by some senior stakeholders (not least the board and the investors) as a fundamental management weakness.