Before making any strategic alterations to actions or plans, it is recommended that all pertinent information and facts are known, which may affect the outcome of the change. You will need to develop a data collection strategy in order to obtain all the information needed to make a fact-based change in any situation.
In order to develop an accurate data collection strategy you must first determine what information must be known in order to make an informed decision. Once you have that information in hand, you must then determine what information you already have that can be discarded as nonessential as well as what essential information you do not have in hand.
Once this list has been compiled and you have determined what data is needed, you can then work on developing a data collection strategy in order to obtain that information. You can determine if the data can be collected through human or mechanical observation, interviewing, auditing or some other method of data collection, and in what order will most efficiently lead to a quicker accomplishment to the project.
Data Collection May Adjust Speed Of Project
Many project-planning experts recommend a schedule be established for each phase of a project and developing a data collection strategy is no different. By understanding the flow of the main project, you can determine how data collection can be made in a particular order to benefit the efficiency of completing the project.
In other words, what information can be beneficial to getting the project moving, and what information will have no influence on the progress and can be completed at a later time.
Regardless of the data required, there needs to be a data collection strategy in place. For example, if the needed information involves foot traffic in a shopping mall for developing a safety plan, data collection would typically be through human observation.
The main considerations would be for which days the information is collected and where in the vicinity would observers have the best view of a particular area. Perhaps sales data through an audit will help determine the busiest days and times based on historical performance.
If the project involves how to route traffic during exceptionally busy times, spending time and money on days that have historically been slow, may be a waste of time and money and this information can be part of your data collection strategy, to utilize resources for the times when better information can be obtained.