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How I made an impact with data in an organization as an engineer
Tempo de leitura: 4 minutos

How I made an impact with data in an organization as an engineer

By Cláudia Gomes, Business Intelligence Developer @ Xpand IT

As a data engineer at Xpand IT, we help our clients get the most out of data by building dashboards, developing data integration processes to unify different operational sources and creating simple daily monitoring reports to more complex visual customizations. What is the key element in all of this, you ask? Data, pure raw data — the 21st-century gold where companies are more and more realizing the potential that data has for their present and future business.

However, it is not always easy to make the clients perceive that the investment they are making in tools and, consequently, people (business intelligence developers) to transform their data will in fact have a high return in both the business and daily processes. More often than not, we get to see directly the impact that our work made on their routines and decision-making. While working at different organizations from different types of business, here are my 5 main takeaways taken from clients that decided to capitalize on their data, counting on data engineers’ and business intelligence developers’ expertise.

Whether you are trying to learn more about the role of a data engineer or even deciding if you apply for a business intelligence and analytics position, for sure you will understand in this article the meaningful impact you can make.

1 — Process Automation/ Productivity Improvement

Companies, particularly medium to large-sized clients, have a reasonably large quantity of raw data to process, analyze and KPI to calculate. The most frequent scenario you will find is a business user copying data to (many) Excel sheets and calculating KPI manually to have those KPI presented to the head of the department or the Administrative Board.

This is an error-prone and time-consuming task that is a real example of how your work as a data engineer can make a difference: you will build a report that will pre-calculate all the necessary KPI beforehand and print them out to an Excel, for example, which will then be directly used by the business user to present them. We cut out tedious hours from his/her routine, which allows him/her to use those hours in more pressing and important matters. We reduce the error and automate a process that was taking hours to a matter of minutes, if not seconds (time to process data and generate a report). Now imagine this type of optimization being done in multiple areas across the company and the influence it has on the company’s productivity!

2 – Business Sales Boost/New Insights

Another common scenario is the analysis of information over long periods of time and across varied axes of analysis: client, sales, amount of transactions among others that may come from different sources such as databases, files, CRM or other business applications. As a data engineer, you provide the processes that allow the consolation of the information and the calculation of metrics important to the client’s business while maintaining this information throughout the years.

This will result in reports or dashboards, which will help understand customer behaviour and customer satisfaction, find profitable areas/customers or cross-selling opportunities, optimize pricing policies and identify market trends. Ultimately, this will allow more targeted marketing messages and campaigns as well as new business opportunities thus leading to higher income revenues.

3 – Faster and more accurate decision making

Competition is getting fiercer and companies want a competitive edge over the other market players. When you develop processes to fetch and consolidate data, while doing so you can create and send alerts to key decision stakeholders and product owners when data reaches certain conditions. This is another common scenario in many clients since this enables a faster decision-making process by providing accurate and relevant information at the right time, which is vital to achieve the desired competitive edge and take the necessary actions.

4 — Self-service and data-driven culture

BI tools promote the sharing of information because they allow business users to access and explore enterprise-wide data even when the user is not experienced in subjects such as statistical analysis. In turn, this fosters an environment of collaboration and communication between departments as well as enables users to consistently track changes in data and receive notifications accordingly. You will also notice that the synergy between IT and business departments will improve and help boost the growth inside an organization.

5 – Operational efficiency/reduction of costs

Monitoring and processing data is not only valuable on the business side but also on the performance and operational efficiency sides. It is crucial for an organization to keep track of metrics such as employee satisfaction, performance, and productivity as well as monitor which areas are more cost-effective and others where costs can be reduced. This will help drive the business towards more efficient processes and operations while also helping the business grow and be more financially healthy on an internal perspective.


Therefore, as a data engineer, the impact you make is a long-lasting one. Clients who were sometimes initially reluctant to become adept and highly enthusiastic when they see that their time can now be used more effectively and that information is now centralized. It is for that lasting and gratifying effect, for that (sometimes) unexpected but great value added to the business that we work for.