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April 13, 2017
Utilizing Big Data: How to Gain Those Elusive Actionable Insights
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Big Data and Business Intelligence Can Help Your Organization Unlock Actionable Insight

Much has been said about the role of information in modern organizations, and evidence suggests that executives who take a tight grip on big data and business intelligence are more likely to steal a competitive advantage over their rivals. In other words, big data, and the actionable intelligence it offers, is an invaluable asset for your company.

Big Data and Big Businesses

High-profile digital companies, like Amazon, Uber and Airbnb, have disrupted long-established markets by using information to provide innovative customer services and experiences. This shift has led executives in all sectors to wake up to the potential power of information, leading them to invest in key big data and business intelligence projects.

A cultural shift toward data-driven decision-making is one factor that continues to drive demand for big data technologies and services. Leading companies recognize that an investment in big data can produce significant dividends. They understand that with the right approach, they can use big data to form insights, transform business operations and improve customer experiences.

Beyond Data Collection

The gains from investing in big data are theoretically huge, but practical realities are not always as convincing as the underlying theory. Too many firms are failing to realize the benefits of big data because they don’t take a mature approach to the introduction of technology.

According to Gartner, a majority of organizations have invested or are planning to invest in big data, but many are stuck at the pilot stage. When it comes to deploying big data products to the production stage, only 15 percent of businesses have accomplished this step and too many big data projects are planned around ad-hoc technologies, instead of production-level reliability.

For many organizations, big data itself is not the problem. If they’ve already made a habit of collecting structured and unstructured information, the challenge is sifting through this data and finding insights that will make a difference to company performance; this is where business intelligence can help.

Smarter Decisions, Less Time

A commitment to big data is just the starting point. The real value comes from using tools to analyze data and make informed decisions. In fact, according to research, 75 percent of organizations cite an investment in business intelligence as their number one big data priority.

What’s more, 95 percent of organizations have achieved, or expect to achieve, positive value from big data. This reveals that companies will be in the best place to deliver insight in the long-term if they commit to business intelligence now. Smart organizations have specialists analyze data and generate actionable insight, and business intelligence will play a key role in this process, helping executives make better decisions quickly.

Creating the Right Culture

The right tools can be key to the maturity of your company’s big data strategy. But technology should be just one component in an integrated approach to business intelligence. To truly unlock the value of big data, a transformation in culture will need to take place alongside the right tools and processes.

Work with your senior peers to define key metrics and the benefits of a great business intelligence project. You’ll need to establish how the insight generated through big data will help your organization achieve its outcomes. Look to create quick wins while establishing a strategy to deliver long-term and lasting success. By keeping the entire organization in mind, your business intelligence project can truly transform your operations.

Big data has received a great deal of attention, but its promise needs to be turned into results, and business intelligence is the key. True transformation is a complex journey that involves people, processes and technologies.

Start by evaluating where your company stands on its big data journey so you can plan ahead and aim for long-term success.

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