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Sensemaking In The Era Of Uncertainty

September 10, 2020

Data Can No Longer Be An Afterthought

In the past decade, data has become one of the biggest opportunities and biggest challenges for leaders. The advancement of technology in sensors, cybersecurity, cloud, and edge computing has enabled more data to become available. In the face of today’s uncertainties and complexities, translating this data into insights for sharper decision making; better, faster actions; and timely engagement with customers and citizens is critical to driving organisational value and differentiation.

ST Engineering commissioned Forrester Consulting to conduct a custom study on the maturity of analytics and sensemaking in organisations today. In this study, we surveyed 800 senior decision makers across Asia and the Middle East and followed up with 14 interviews to understand their current priorities and challenges. Through this, we also developed a Sensemaking Maturity Index (SMI) that assesses organisations’ readiness across technology, strategy, culture, and security.

Key Findings

Most (69%) organisations want to build analytics capabilities to understand customer needs more efficiently; however, only 22% can empower teams with the relevant insights. Firms are focusing on building a sensemaking strategy but are falling behind in their data culture. This is especially true for public sector firms, where data use is still siloed.

Managing data complexity is the biggest challenge for decision makers: 59% consider their current data environment too complex to manoeuvre into sensemaking capabilities.


The orchestration of data from sensors, systems, platforms, processes, and people to sense, connect, and make sense of — to provide clarity with meaningful, purposeful lines of sight, insights, and foresights — to enable fast, sharp decisions or outcomes and experiences.

Focus On Sensemaking To Advance Human-First Engagement

Across both the public and private sectors, organisations are focusing on customers’ or citizens’ needs. Seventy-four percent of decision makers cite improving their end customers’ and citizens’ experiences as a high or critical priority; 71% are looking at deploying new solutions and systems to address their stakeholders’ needs; and 69% want to specifically focus on building efficiency and effectiveness in their customer interactions.

Amid the current COVID-19 pandemic, data has become even more critical in helping organisations understand and address customers’ needs.

Download the report to find out more.

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Cloud, Cybersecurity, Data, Edge Computing, Sensemaking
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