May 5, 2011 – Customer analytics adoption in areas such as product development, pricing and sales has not kept up with other business-side uses, putting a majority of companies behind on their full revenue potential, according to a survey from Accenture.

The new survey queried 800 IT directors and senior managers across industry verticals in the U.S., U.K., Canada, Brazil, China, Germany, Italy, Japan, Ireland and Spain.

Although 55 percent of organizations rated their analytics in relation to customer experience and CRM as “ideal” or “very good,” about that same amount noted room for improvement with use of analytics information in different departments. Only 70 percent of those organizations are using analytics for one or two of its available functions, the survey found.

Companies in the survey were not using customer analytics for product and service pricing (86 percent), product and service delivery (77 percent), sales (61 percent), new product and service development (59 percent), and customer service (56 percent). Marketing was the leading use of customer analytics at 65 percent.

Julio Hernandez, global lead for customer analytics at Accenture, says the lack of enterprise-wide use of this data obscures revenue streams and allows anecdotal evidence to overtake statistical facts in business decisions.

“The companies are using some level of customer insight in thinking about how they should treat their customers from [the company’s] perspective with some intelligence, but they’re not really trying to make themselves as valuable to their customers as they could,” Hernandez says.

In the survey, only about 15 percent of organizations rated their customer or prospect data as easily accessible, and the level of integration registered even lower. Hernandez says that access to customer analytics is often departmentalized in an organization – keeping pricing separate from customer interactions, for example – raising questions over who is responsible for different areas of data.

Corporate and sales culture as well as budget limitations were the top reasons cited for internal hesitation with widespread use of customer analytics, the survey outlined.

Click here for a copy of the survey.