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A Global Consulting Company Explores Data-Driven Strategies to Grow the Business


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A Global Consulting Company Explores Data-Driven Strategies to Grow the Business


The commercial intelligence team is charged with building a growth mindset across the organization and wanted to pursue a data-driven strategy to accelerate performance. This required determining which datasets would deliver the most value.

Many factors are reshaping the strategy consulting industry. This includes fierce competition from boutiques with deep expertise in a niche, plus the ability to deliver strong results at relatively low costs.[1] This is putting pressure on larger firms to look at new ways to bring ideas and solutions to the table.

Data-driven decision-making has been shown to drive new opportunities, disrupt existing markets and create competitive advantage.[2] There are challenges associated with effectively using data, however, including the time needed to identify the most relevant information to use given the enormous increase in the volume and variety of sources.

At this firm, data was being collected in a very fragmented way, and the commercial intelligence team saw an opportunity for the firm to up its game by building state-of-the-art dashboards to help uncover insights for clients. Identifying the right datasets to drive the dashboards would be a challenge, however, given the number of industries and functional areas being served.

Pain Points

Members of the commercial intelligence team wanted the opportunity to review different datasets to see which ones appeared to be most relevant, and then experiment with those selected to see which ones worked well in the dashboards and yielded interesting results. In addition, they wanted:

  • Ready access to all the data needed from a singular trusted provider.
  • The ability to use a web-based notebook environment for exploratory dataanalysis.
  • Strong visualization capabilities to better understand trends, outliers andpatterns.

The company was already a client of S&P Global Market Intelligence (“Market Intelligence”), and members of the commercial intelligence team were familiar with its extensive array of data. They also knew that the recent merger with IHS Markit had significantly expanded the offering. They reached out to see if they could test and experiment with different datasets to prove proof of concept before formally expanding their contract.

The Solution

Market Intelligence specialists described the perfect solution for team members. First, they could seamlessly explore and evaluate datasets and solutions available via the S&P Global Marketplace, which serves as the single data catalogue across S&P Global and select third-party providers. Then, they could select and trial various different datasets, including extensive private company financials, global transactions, key developments at companies, environmental data and more, all to be linked using a powerful cross reference offering.

This data could be accessed via the S&P Global Marketplace Workbench, a cutting-edge technology that enables users to test, explore and experiment with datasets from S&P Global and curated third-party providers in a scalable and secure cloud-based environment, with no installation required. Using the web-based notebook environment, users can create and share documents that contain live code, equations, visualizations and explanatory text. This would enable the commercial intelligence team to:

Quickly perform exploratory data analysis

Workbench would provide access to the datasets to perform exploratory analysis or build models.

Access pre-built started and analytical notebooks

Users can easily analyze and review 65+ pre-built notebooks[3] by S&P Global data experts and data scientists, or build their own to better understand and see first-hand the value of various datasets.

Use multiple languages

Workbench facilitates multi-language support in a single notebook inclusive of R, Python, SQL and Scala and supports interoperability between programming code that is executed in different languages.

Create extensive visualizations

With Workbench, users can create tables, charts, dashboards, animations and more to see correlations and capture the power of the data.

Benefit from automatic versioning

Code, text and data is automatically version controlled, keeping track of changes that have been made and ensuring that team members are all using the latest information.

Easily work collaboratively

The environment enables teams to collaborate across notebooks in their company's own secure and scalable workspace. Users can share notebooks and work with colleagues through real-time co-authoring and commenting to enable streamlined teamwork while maintaining control.

Key Benefits

Members of the commercial intelligence team are now using S&P Global Marketplace Workbench to rapidly create prototypes of dashboards, benefiting from direct access to data without having to load it locally, and increasing the speed to market for new solutions. Leveraging pre-built notebooks, they have been able to quickly identify the datasets that, together, provide the value they need to enable the consultants to uncover new ideas to introduce to clients. Marketplace Workbench has enabled them to:

  • Review numerous datasets to assess their relevance and experiment with those selected to see how they work in the dashboards.
  • Easily pull information from multiple datasets to connect the dots and create rich stories with a 3600 perspective.
  • See how data visualizations can be used to present clear, yet powerful, presentations for both internal use and with clients.

Aside from this testing, the commercial intelligence team also subscribed to two services that are now available after the merger with IHS Markit:

  • The Industry Forecast Monitor provides comprehensive and reliable industry data to help assess opportunities in major industries across more than 120 countries.
  • The Comparative Industry Service provides forecasts, analysis and high-impact content to help clients rank, size and compare global sector performance, understand supply chain dynamics and develop competitive strategies.

This data is being delivered to internal users via XpressfeedTM that automates the download and management of Market Intelligence data and enables delivery as needed in a ready-to-query relational database.

Click here to explore some of the datasets mentioned in this Case Study.

See How Your Company Can Set the Pace

In an intensely competitive and unpredictable marketplace, it’s not enough to respond to the status quo. As a single, trusted source, S&P Global Market Intelligence’s solutions, data and expertise drive multiple workflows across organizations, helping you enhance decision-making and accelerate growth. See how your company can Set the Pace.

[1] “Consulting Industry Trends in 2022”, PrepLounge, March 3, 2022,

[2] “Delivering Value from Data: Accelerating the path from data to decision”, S&P Global Market Intelligence 451 Research, as on:

[3] Numbers as of January 2022.

Explore the S&P Global Marketplace Workbench.
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