Do you know the true value of data and what it holds in optimising efficiencies within your business? In this blog post, we will explore some of the key skills required by data managers to maximise the opportunities for business with a focus on those managing the carbon footprint process.

If used effectively, data has the ability to optimise business operations. In carbon footprints, if the data is inconsistent, inaccurate and incomplete, the results will be meaningless and your business will not benefit. To manage reliable data, a system needs to be put in place. However, a system is only as good as the person who manages it.

In working closely with our clients, we have come to understand that it is essential to ensure companies’ have the right person to manage not only the data but the carbon footprint process overall.  The following are key skills:

  • Data management: The ideal person needs to take ownership of the data and needs to fully understand the path that the data has followed prior to it arriving at their fingertips.
  • Project management: Excellent project management skills are required to ensure the correct data is requested from the right parties, with sufficient time to allow for data quality checks, queries, verification and report writing.
  • Time management: Once the carbon footprinting process begins, it needs to be carried out relatively quickly. Businesses are often dependent on data to present in their annual reports or to feedback to their stakeholders and investors. Consequently, it is critical that the person employed can work efficiently and effectively to meet tight deadlines.
  • Stakeholder facilitation: Data is not only sourced in-house, but is often sourced from external services providers. There is a definite international shift in business to engage the supply chain. This has its own set of challenges, particularly when engagement goes beyond borders and languages.
  • People management: By building relationships within the team that provides the raw data, it becomes easier to manage the people and data within those teams. The data manager needs to be able to communicate effectively and meet tight deadlines. It’s a well-known fact that effective people management results in better team performance, creative contributions, higher productivity – and ultimately profitability. Employees are also more likely to stay with the company longer if they have a good manager.
  • Data analysis: The data needs to be compared historically, highlighting where there are variations and noting why there are differences. The ideal recruit for this position will be able to identify data anomalies and inefficiencies within the business operations.

Finding a person with all these skills can be difficult and that is why working in the sustainability sector requires team work and partnerships. We at Carbon Calculated value having a partnership with our clients where we are part of their team, improving an understanding of the key persons role and the value they are creating within the business.

“Great things in business are never done by one person. They’re done by a team of people” – Steve Jobs

– Nici Palmer, Founding Member of Carbon Calculated,