Hey, manager! Are you losing revenue due to data ignorance?

In a time-recording business, excess hours cannot be stored in the warehouse. Therefore, your colleagues' performance is the alpha and omega of revenue. To get started, you need an overview of your business's performance by integrating all your data into manageable dashboards that update in real time. The insight will give you a solid foundation for optimising the company's performance, as the benchmark is now clear and visible to all relevant managers.

As a leader in a larger organisation, you should make strategic decisions based on data, intuition and experience. In this blog post, you can find good advice for optimising the workflows of an hourly-recording company, and see how much a 1% performance boost in one of the core parameters of a consulting house – the invoicing rate – means for revenue. 

Our methods are based on how we at Novicell have worked with these factors in recent years, so you also get an insight into how we, with data dashboards, have an overview of our entire business – in real time – and can act on it. Novicell went from being data-ignorant to being data-driven in one year.

Read how we did it here.

The problem: growth had to be consolidated with real-time performance data 

In 2018, we faced a major growth challenge at Novicell. The growth in employees did not result in corresponding relative revenue growth. In fact, productivity per employee decreased. But employees are also our biggest asset, which is why daily visualisations for KPIs and relevant key figures were crucial to success.

We did not have the necessary overview and control of how hours were spent before the month was completed and invoiced. Tangible insight into what excess hours and internal hours were spent on, and how the invoicing rate could be increased, was essential to the desire for increased revenue. We put on our business-critical glasses to identify the blur in the gearbox. There was untapped potential for increased growth due to lack of overview, management and data knowledge.  

We had a concrete desire to gain daily insight into operations and performance across teams, departments and countries throughout the organisation to be able to act and allocate hours in real time, instead of being surprised once a month – and always being behind.

The solution: the basis for good strategic decisions is a combination of data, intuition and experience

To solve the growth challenge, it was fundamental to invest in a common data set as the backbone of automated and integrated dashboards. All data channels were integrated into one unified user  platform, uploaded to the cloud and visualised using Power BI, which clarified all our key figures across the organisation at a glance – management was rediscovered in Novicell.  

Today, we use our dashboards for, among other things:

  • Seeing how many new customer cases are on the way in, so we can receive them in the best possible way with the right resources
  • Assessing the occupancy rate in each team and whether there is a need to re-allocate resources
  • Getting an overview of what happens from when an hour is sold until it is invoiced – and whether there are any patterns in why hours are written off
  • Communicating across teams if we can see that a team is doing particularly well on one or more key figures
  • Having a common language and a common data set for how we evaluate our business

Business development has enabled daily navigation and capacity optimisation on a well-documented basis much earlier in the process. Our managers look at the data-driven dashboards several times a day, which guarantees the necessary security in decisions. If you, as a manager, want to be present in everyday life, this is achievable by ensuring a factual foundation from which you can navigate across the entire organisation.

From performance overview to performance boost

Integrated data dashboards create an overview, but do not breed an increased billing rate without  action. In our business, the overview became a catalyst for the goal of increased management in the organisation, as well as a basis for reconciling the managers’ expectations and the employees’ performance – on a daily basis. 

Based on our custom-made data dashboards, Novicell’s members of the Executive Board have stated the following:

Group CEO, Per Kirchner

‘We can respond in real time via automated dashboards and evaluate our performance based on the same data overview across teams, departments and countries. Yesterday’s crucial key figures for the company are being served to me when I wake up. It makes a colossal difference.’

CCO, Morten Longgaard

‘I have a collection of sales reports that give me two things mainly: insight into our sales performance and an overview of upcoming projects that we can plan our resources after. Data comes from our CRM system, and in the reports I can see when a new project comes into the pipeline, when a deadline is being pushed or when the scope of the project is being adjusted, and I can see the performance of the individual sales consultants or split the pipeline down to department level. Everything is updated in real time so that it matches the image in our primary sales tool, our CRM, where the sales person keeps data up to date. With a few clicks, I can always provide answers to what we expect to be able to deliver to different parts of the organisation, and see what phase we are in on different in-sales, so I can offer relevant communication to the sales consultants in the process.’ 

CFO, Kasper Thomsen

‘Basically, it is about getting the right information at the right time, which can then be translated into concrete actions in everyday life. In addition, it has become significantly easier to analyse data, as we have all the information at hand down to the smallest detail. Before we started implementing our data warehouse with integrated data dashboards, there was a large amount of work with a relatively large risk of error associated, as you manually combined different data sources. Our easy access to data availability gives us enormous value in the company.’

COO, Lars Hougaard

‘It is a great help to have a fact-based picture of how our business is running. It is a key tool that ensures that we can spend time managing through better decisions rather than looking for relevant data. We do this now in real time, so that in our daily lives we are very close to our customer deliveries and thereby the most important management parameters for our company.’

In one year, the value of data has led to the following positive key figures for Novicell:

What does the increase in performance, and thus the invoicing rate, mean for the bottom line?

Now it gets a bit nerdy with a little math, but the point has been lucrative. 

If we had 200 employees during the period invoicing 115 GBP per hour, it would mean an increased turnover of 404.53 GBP per 1% increase in invoicing rate. In this case, with a 7.3% improvement, it would give an increased turnover of approx. 2.9 million GBP in one year.

Benefits of implementing integrated and automated real-time data dashboards

Overview

Through automated day-to-day reporting in dashboards and constant analysis and measurement of KPIs, it enables quick action if something goes in the wrong direction.

Insight

All the decision makers within the company can plan strategic changes on a data-driven basis and focus on optimising the business’ revenue sources.

Resource optimisation

Increased capacity and project management in all of the company’s departments and teams ensures a higher invoicing rate with lower costs and increased efficiency per sold hour.

Targeted work culture

An updated dashboard gives the full picture of the company’s performance right down to the individual employee in relation to the business’ set goals.

It all starts with integrating the company’s relevant data into one overview that provides a rational foundation for strategic decision making. We have become experts in this and we advise our customers to do the same.

Invest in the future and invest in data-driven security – we are here to help you all the way.

We help organise and integrate all your data into clear visualisations. We have a lot of basic functionality that we can use as a starting point for dashboards for your company, but of course we can also make customised solutions. Whether it is a general overview for the management, dashboards for the sales department, finance, production or marketing, we utilise the potential of your data to grow the company on a secure and factual basis.

With our knowledge and experience, the manual daily reporting becomes automated and flawless. Management can make strategic decisions on a data-driven basis with peace of mind, and your company's operations can be customised and managed carefully from day-to-day. We call this Project and Capacity Management with a positive bottom-line effect.

Want to know more? Join our exclusive webinar 

Are you a decision maker in a time-recording company such as a law firm, architectural firm, consultancy or similar? Do you intend to implement a more data-driven business model for a competitive advantage in the future? Or are you losing revenue due to data ignorance?

On 29 September, we are hosting an exclusive webinar for directors and relevant decision makers, where Novicell’s Business Intelligence Director, Jens Grønkjær, will share his experience from helping time-recording businesses combat data ignorance. He will also share how Novicell has benefitted from gaining daily insight into customer time, free time, internal time, capacity utilisation, pipeline and the like – and how it can benefit you, too.

Sign up here

How can we implement the solution for you?

If you want to know more about our growth-oriented data optimisation strategy, and how your company can make strategic decisions based on real-time dashboards, please contact me. 

We can book a meeting online or at your office.