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| 3 minutes read

CMO Series Live: The Data Down-Low: How Weightmans Transformed Data for BD

Last month, I have the pleasure of being joined on stage by Sarah-Jane Howitt, Director of Business Development & Marketing at Weightmans to explore how Sarah-Jane has been able to turn data into a strength for BD at her firm.

During the insight-packed session, we covered:

  • How Weightmans have built a reputation as leaders in data.
  • What does good actually look like in practice?
  • Using data to predict pipelines and shape BD campaigns.

How Weightmans have built a reputation as leaders in data

Weightmans has embraced data as an integral part of its operations, fostering an open-minded and fearless culture surrounding its use. The firm recognised that the conversation had already begun, with clients leading the charge. This client-centric approach formed the foundation for their data transformation efforts.

To streamline data management, Weightmans built a data warehouse that enables them to consolidate information from different systems into one centralised location. This unified data repository can be sliced and diced in various ways, facilitating easy visualisation and analysis.

What does good look like in practice?

Recognising the importance of real-time data access, Weightmans integrated live data feeds into their meetings. Partners in BD meetings can now view updated data dashboards, providing them with the necessary insights and information to make informed decisions. This approach ensures that data is readily available and actively used in their day-to-day operations.

Another key focus for Sarah-Jane's team was the creation of data dashboards that present information in a visual and easily understandable format. Using tools like Tableau, their data services team collaboratively developed dashboards that catered to different needs within the firm. By making data more visual, Weightmans aimed to enhance understanding and improve decision-making processes.

In addition to their core data initiatives, the team at Weightmans is working on integrating client feedback data and employing sentiment analysis. These projects aim to gain a comprehensive understanding of client needs and satisfaction, helping the firm improve its services and overall client experience.

Using data to predict pipelines and shape campaigns

Weightmans' BD team can accurately gauge the duration of each sector's sales cycle as a result of integrating data from finance and CRM platforms. This information aids in forecasting and budgeting for the following year, allowing for better resource allocation.

For campaigns, Weightmans have developed a dashboard that quantifies and measures the impact and revenue generated from each campaign. This data-driven approach encourages partners to focus on proving the value of campaigns and supports decision-making for future campaign planning.

Key Takeaways

1. Have a strong vision:

Clearly communicate the benefits of data transformation and its relevance to your firm's goals and objectives.

2. Be persistent and consistent:

Maintain a consistent dialogue about the importance of data, making it a part of everyday conversations and operations.

3. Embed data usage into the everyday

: Make data usage an integral part of everyone's role by discussing it in meetings and incorporating it into daily tasks across the firm.

4. Find advocates:

Identify and empower individuals who are enthusiastic about data transformation to act as champions within your firm.

5. Run pilot projects: 

Conduct pilot projects to prove the value and effectiveness of data initiatives. Successful outcomes can generate momentum, inspire broader adoption, and gain buy-in from stakeholders across the firm.


The session provided valuable insights into Weightmans' successful data transformation journey for business development, and whilst Sarah-Jane stressed that there is no final destination for leveraging data for BD, by integrating data into daily operations, leveraging visualisations and dashboards, and continually evolving their approach, Sarah-Jane and her team have harnessed the power of data to drive revenue, make informed decisions, and deliver better client experiences at scale.


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