Research has demonstrated that companies still struggle to manage big data as a result of inadequate strategies, expertise and technologies. In order to fully leverage benefits from these projects, firms will need to deploy the most advanced business intelligence (BI) technologies and database experts.
V3 reported that studies by the consulting firm TCS found that most enterprises are not utilizing big data platforms to their full advantage, hindering ROI. Satya Ramaswamy, global head of mobility for the firm, explained that one of the main problems is that firms are applying big data initiatives to the wrong projects, and as a result, seeing less of a significant impact from these efforts. Targeting big data strategies toward other internal functions could actually generate higher ROI. According to V3, TCS also emphasized the importance of gathering outside data. The firm estimated that as much as 37 percent of content in their big data platforms is collected from external sources.
According to V3, TCS ultimately found that poor planning is not the only factor hampering big data success. The study found that many enterprises are challenged by the shortage of analysts, and have difficulty finding staff qualified to deal with big data platforms.
Getting people involved in the process
GigaOM reported that the recent Structure Data event in New York City focused on overcoming obstacles to get actionable results from big data. Mohan Namboordiri, vice president of customer analytics at Williams-Sonoma, stated at the event that many firms are still blindsided by the sheer volume and speed of data, and fail to think about actual problems within the business that could be resolved with these initiatives. John Sothan, vice president of finance for BuiltDirect, supported this assertion.
"The way to turn data into insight is to squash the notion that big data is a silver bullet," Sothan said, according to GigaOM. "We preach that data and analytics is important, but then we empower people to be curious and ask questions and get involved in big data analytics. We need to teach users to cut into the data and be curious…"
One of the major points speakers agreed on at the Structure Data event was that human expertise needs to be incorporated into the analytic process of big data. By leveraging the support of remote database services and integrating a human aspect to these projects, enterprises can ensure that these initiatives generate maximum ROI.
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