Yahoo Japan

Yahoo Japan Corporation Scales Enablement and Empowers 5,400 Employees with Data Skills

Upskilled 5,400 Tableau users, representing a 2600% increase in users in five years

Data automation in advertising has led to an increase in sales proposals and orders

Data-led improvements to PDCA cycle have saved 1,500 hours per year

Yahoo Japan Corporation was launched as the internet’s first Japanese-language search engine and has since become one of the country’s largest comprehensive information sites with close to 100 different services, including commerce, news, and travel.

The site serves more than 86 million end-users per month who generate a vast amount of data. Yahoo Japan Corporation refers to this data as multi-big data and uses it to improve service delivery and drive business growth. 

Yahoo Japan Corporation turned to Tableau in 2017 to quickly and easily derive insights from its multi-big data. The company started with just 20 users and has increased this to 5,400 with a comprehensive program of enablement. These employees are now equipped to make faster, data-driven decisions leading to outcomes such as an increase in advertising orders.


Center of Excellence drives training and adoption

Yahoo Japan Corporation previously analyzed multi-big data with tools developed in-house. However, the company wanted to speed up analysis to quickly identify and respond to market changes. It also wanted a solution to reduce reporting time and support future analytical needs.

Tableau presented a solution to all these challenges and Yahoo Japan Corporation deployed it to one division to start before rolling it out across the company. The company also set up a Center of Excellence (CoE) to drive adoption.

Our multi-big data generates value that no other company can imitate and our CoE promotes Tableau as a means for anyone to quickly and efficiently derive insights from that data.

The CoE initially offered monthly training sessions on Tableau. Then, as demand increased, the CoE introduced the Skill Belt program and brought training online.

“Yahoo Japan Corporation’s Skill Belt is an active learning and unification program based on three main elements. First, there is a wealth of content to help employees improve their analytics skills. Second, learning is supported through gamification. Third, employees can visualize how they are performing against others,” said Ayako Nagano, Tableau CoE Specialist, Data Application Division, Data Group at Yahoo Japan Corporation.

The Skill Belt program includes eight courses and 150 training modules that cater to new and more advanced users of Tableau. The eight courses include separate courses for Viewers and Creators, Visual Best Practice, Tableau Prep, Data Solutions, Site Admin, Features, and Yahoo Japan Corporation Tableau Ambassador.

The Skill Belt program allows employees to learn at their own pace. They can start by understanding how Tableau works before learning practical information like how to connect to company-specific databases.

Employees can also earn points and level up as they complete different modules and courses. This has fostered friendly competition and contributed to the collective completion of 15,000 training modules to date.


CoE augments online learning and promotes best practice

The Skill Belt program equips employees with the essential skills they need to make sense of their data. However, the CoE wanted to go beyond delivering the essentials and help employees get more value from Tableau.

The team implemented three measures to augment the online learning available through its Skill Belt program. The first was a campaign to encourage individuals and teams to share their best tips with other users. The second was a viz contest to promote best practice in data visualization. The third was a Tableau Ambassador at Yahoo Japan Corporation. This program continues to run today and includes seminars and events for those who want to extend on the learning available through the Skill Belt program.


Data-driven culture fuels business outcomes

Employees across Yahoo Japan Corporation now use Tableau to understand and take action on their data. For example, the company’s advertising business unit has created dashboards to inform planning activities and sales negotiations. The dashboards have helped the business unit reduce time spent on reporting by 70%. This time is now spent generating more sales proposals and securing more orders.

Insights from Tableau have also helped increase the efficiency of the company’s PDCA cycle, contributing to a savings of 1,500 hours per year in a six-person team alone. In addition to saving time through automation, Tableau has enabled Yahoo Japan Corporation to combine its internal data with external social and market data. As a result, the company is able to discover new insights to inform its sales proposals.

We are now able to propose solutions that are more in tune with our customers’ needs which helps us to gain their trust.