Domopalooza 2023 – making an impact without being a data scientist

Alex Lee Profile picture for user alex_lee March 30, 2023
Domo reveals its latest plans to make data insights accessible to all kinds of users to make an impact, without fear of imposter syndrome. Here are the highlights from Domopalooza 2023's keynote.

Daren Thayne CTO, EVP of Product Domo
Daren Thayne

Domopalooza 2023 kicked off with a variety of announcements interspersed with customer examples from a variety of industries from retail, healthcare, pharmaceuticals and manufacturing.

CTO Daren Thayne outlined some of the challenges facing enterprises today: 

To thrive in the future, data needs to be more accessible and actionable, putting the power directly into the hands of your people, no matter their fluency with data... It was a crazy idea to try to run a business from a phone, but what seemed impossible over a decade ago is becoming a baseline expectation.

Domo unveiled several new offerings intended to allow organizations to customize dashboards to leverage all of their data, tell intuitive stories, and show beautiful charting options. They included:

  • Self-serve reporting - a data experience that offers interactive dashboards with dynamic tools for any business user.
  • Domo Apps Studio - a no code app builder that makes creating, distributing and consuming Domo apps accessible to everyone across different devices and platforms.
  • Cloud amplifier – which lets you use your cloud warehouse as your data and storage layer within Domo, while all data remains at rest in the original system to maintain a single source of truth.
  • Domo Everywhere - dynamic personal data permissions and publishing  which lets you choose what dataset powers visualisation at the time it's displayed, reducing admin effort while bolstering data security.

Making a data investment is no small choice, and decision makers are under pressure to show results quickly to influence business outcomes.

Users please!

That’s the product pitch party line. But as ever, and as diginomica always says, show me the customer! Domo obliged. 

Regional One Health, is a level one trauma center that set out to remove bottlenecks across its complex data system to provide better data access to its teams. It takes care of a lot of vulnerable patients, high acuity patients and trauma burn, high risk OB in 150 miles in any direction. Dr. Reginald Cooper Woods, CEO of Regional One Health, set the scene:

When I joined here I was basically tasked with making this organization thirsty for data. If you take our journey and fast track it, that's essentially what we want to help hospitals do now.

Woods said Domo has provided frontline managers with the ability to make data-driven decisions: 

Our VP of Pharmacy really needed to grow the amount of pharmacy prescriptions that were completed in house instead of them going to outside pharmacies and when the project started, they had about a 33% average use of internal prescriptions. Now it has grown to a 60% growth. [We are] able to daily see how we were making an impact and see the trend lines to see what we needed to continue to do to be able to make up gaps, or if we were over-performing, what that meant for the rest of the year. Seeing those trajectories, giving the managers that information, was so inspiring to help them stay committed and motivated. It ended up adding $6 million to our bottom line.” 

There have been clear dividends that have benefited both users and patients, he added: 

At the end of the year, we use the data mainly to see how our patients move through the system. If we find roadblocks or other things like that, that are affecting patient care, then the Domo data set gives us an ability to identify those things in real time. We've talked to different people to see what level of data do you need to see in order for you to make the best decision? Some of the cards are just gauges. They just show a quick number and red or green, and then you have some that show trend information. You click on one level and it shows the breakdown by clinical departments or by leader. We've really done that legwork based on what's worked for us in our hospital to recommend what might work for others.

As for future developments, Woods has a clear idea of what comes next: 

We want to make sure that each patient is viewed not as a series of numbers, but that they actually get the care that they need. But to do that we have to optimize the system, looking at how they move through the hospital, through laboratory, through radiology, through special procedures, to get the whole picture. And so once we kind of tie each of those departments into the dataset, we'll actually have a full picture of how the patient comes into the hospital, works their way through and then ultimately leaves.”

Regional One Health has blazed a trail here, he suggested, one that other organizations may yet benefit from: 

How do we take the kind of the blood sweat and tears that we did and the trial and error that we did in building what we have today and the dashboards so that other organizations don't have to have that same journey?... We have taken what we've done here at Regional One Health with our Domo use cases and packaged them into an app that basically rolls up 16 key performance indicators that we feel are data-proven points for the healthcare industry.

Retail - reading the love meter

Another use case came from the retail sector in the form of Sephora, a global premium beauty retailer which has over 3000 points of sale.  The firm has used Domo since 2018 as its primary data visualization tool and now has 1800 users internally and externally. Angeline Ho, Vice President of Strategy and Business Development for Sephora Aisa said: 

We have a lot of automated dashboards for different purposes. For example, whenever we have big promotions, everyone will look at the common dashboard called campaign tracker and top managers and e-commerce operations team. They will watch closely on the sales performance and adjust their strategy accordingly. And for supply chain they will monitor the inventory of the top sellers and ensure we have enough stock in different locations. The marketing team will look at the members’ participation and see if we need to increase the reach of different channels.

Ho explained that customers love to come into the store to experiment with different beauty products. In the Sephora Raffles City store in Singapore, while beauty advisors are on hand to support customers, there are also digital devices that can be used to scan a product barcode which brings up full product information and customer reviews. The store is also equipped with mobile Point of Sale (POS) devices so that customers can make their purchase any time during their visit, anywhere.

Ho went on:  

Everything is captured and viewed through Domo, so that we have a holistic view of both behavioral and transactional data. We measure customer satisfaction through a matrix called 'Love Meter'. Since enabling this, we are able to access a very rich data pool from which to understand a more holistic view of our customer preferences, which allows us to serve them better, whether they are shopping in store or online. Since we enabled the mobile POS as well as receipts, we've seen the response rate of the Love Meter increased almost tenfold.

My take 

Information can be beautiful. I’m not a data scientist – but it’s reasonable to expect as part of most roles to learn continuously, and be able to interpret the data we can access to make better decisions, show a return on investment and demonstrate growth with evidence not anecdotes.

During a demonstration in the keynote, examples of how dashboards could be quickly customized and enhanced to process enormous amounts of data to focus in on one particular insight in just a couple of clicks was impressive. 

It can be all too easy for less qualified data users to go from “We have graphs!”, to realizing that pie charts and columns aren’t going to cut it. Hours spent frustratedly wrangling with pivot tables, spreadsheets, making graphs, then adding a narrative before facing up to the reality that you need to go back to the beginning to reproduce these insights for a whole different audience . 

One final quote that reduced my level of impostor syndrome in the face of data science came from Anthony Hoang, Chief Technology Officer at CleanChoice Energy:

You have a clear vision of what you're trying to do. You're being creative around how you can do it. And you're empowering all of your employees to move towards that, so that you don't actually have to be a data scientist to understand what the data is telling you. You can be an operations analyst, or a marketing manager and use that information to make the strategic decisions in real time daily to make decisions.

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