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Exploring Interconnected Business Relationships

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By Michael Goldberg, Content Marketing Director at Dun & Bradstreet

How much do you really know about the companies you do business with day in and day out? Sure, you may understand how your growth is affected by dealings with a supplier you’ve worked with for over a decade. But what about the association that supplier has to another company you may have never even heard of? Don’t believe how they do business can inadvertently effect you? Think again.

Among the entities you do business with lie potentially crucial insights and information that can be critical in assessing total risk and opportunity. While not obvious at first glance, these insights become visible when you dive down to explore the information that links these entities to you, as well as their connections to other businesses.

By doing this, you’ll be able to understand the full potential of your relationships with customers, prospects, suppliers and partners. This is relationship data – when information about two or more entities is brought together along with their business activities to inform an implied business impact or outcome. Through a combination of interpreting the right signal data and implementing advanced analytics on the data, unmet needs arise, hidden dangers surface and new opportunities can be identified.

Every company has relationship data, they just need to know where to look for it, or who to partner with to obtain the right information. There are different types of relationships; some you can see easily, while others are harder to decipher, but just as important to your bottom line. Understanding the way in which two or more entities are connected is the foundation of this data.

The more you connect and expose entities across your databases, the greater your visibility into cross-company interactions with these enterprises. The ability to uncover previously hidden associations in the data provides a catalyst for business transformation and insight. Exposing relationships across product lines, branches and countries creates opportunities to evaluate sales coverage, modify compensation plans, renegotiate terms and conditions, adjust compliance policies, improve customer experiences, build advanced segmentation categories and uncover hidden supply chain risk.

It is important to remember that relationships can be one-to-one, one-to-many or many-to-many. They can be uni-directional or bi-directional in nature. Understanding the differences can be key to the types of questions you ask and what insights you draw from the data. The deeper you go in connecting the associated entities and the information that aligns to their business practices, the richer the insights you’ll uncover. Ultimately, these richer data points enable you to move beyond simple modeling based on internal historical data and produce sophisticated business models grounded in multifaceted business connections.

As more businesses point to smart data as a conduit to growth, it’s important to ask the right questions of your data in order to extract meaningful insights to propel your business. That means going beneath the surface of what you normally see and exploring your business relationships to fully understand their cause and effect in your very own ecosystem.

Orignal content and infographic found on http://www.dnbpartner.com/exploring-business-relationships-through-data.

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