What do we mean by Single Source of Truth?
Single Source of Truth is an IT principle whereby data from many systems within a business is aggregated into a single location. It is not a system, tool or strategy. It is a state of being for a business’s data where it is stored in one secure, primary location and it is constantly updated with the latest info.
Why is it important?
Having a single source of truth for business data is very important in a business for a number of reasons:
- All stakeholders have access to the same available data to make important decisions.
- Less time is wasted on worrying about which version of data should be used in the decision-making process.
- Poor data can lead to duplication of effort or mistakes which can be costly for a business.
- Lack of consistent data is very stressful for decision makers.
- Deadlines can be negatively impacted if you don’t have a single source of truth.
Benefits of having a single source of truth in your business
- Elimination of duplicated entries of data.
- Decision-makers have the right data at the right time.
- It reduces the time spent identifying which recorded data is correct.
- It improves the business’s data intelligence capabilities.
Obstacles to achieving a single source of truth in your business and how to overcome them
There are a number of possible obstacles to businesses being able to achieve this single source of truth:
- It can be difficult to ensure that the centralised data you use as your “single source of truth” is of highest quality (i.e. it is authentic, relevant and referable). The best ways to overcome this include:
- Excluding certain types of data that are irrelevant or contradictory.
- Only including data that comes from official sources.
- Storing data on an openly accessible platform to individuals within the business.
- Lack of stakeholder buy-in will prevent the successful adoption of any project. To prevent this from happening, you need to work with your business management team to ensure that they all understand the importance of having a single source of truth in the business and are able to communicate this importance to their teams.
- There can be uncertainty about what the data is actually telling stakeholders in the business. In order to mitigate this, these stakeholders need to see beyond the “noise” and use the overarching data to make considered decisions.
How Business Central can give your business a single source of truth?
Business Central gives you a single, consolidated view of all your business data. This can be financial data such as cash flow, bank reconciliations, fixed assets and budget forecasts, or general data such as vendor and customer records. This single view ensures that you and everyone in the business has the same data to hand and, as a result, are able to make crucial business decisions based on it.
A TVision customer who has benefitted considerably from this approach has been RDG Engineering (click here to download their case study). Prior to implementing Business Central, RDG had used multiple disparate systems. They used SAGE Line50 for their finance system with a separate credit control solution added on to it. In addition, RDG had a legacy project automation system which didn’t quite meet the company’s particular needs so it had been modified in order to force it to do so. The result was that RDG had a business management environment where the different systems did not communicate with one another.
RDG selected Business Central because it was able to give their business a single source of truth – one customer, one contact, one job. They were looking for a platform that could deliver and interrogate data to offer an overview of the business, allowing metrics such as productivity, efficiency and margins to be visualised. Choosing Business Central and, with it, the Microsoft platform was key to this project, allowing multiple technologies to link together.
How can TVision help you?
TVision is one of the largest and most experienced providers of Business Central and NAV in the UK. If you want to know more about how Business Central can become the single source of truth in your business, please contact us to arrange a demo.