BIG data might offer BIG benefits to some businesses


Here’s a recent statistic to contemplate; around 75%-80% of all data accumulated by businesses is currently “unstructured”. What does this mean? Basically, it means that most businesses are sitting on a treasure trove of data which they are not able to put into good use. When it comes to BIG data management, we’re not talking about something that’s optional for most of the world’s institutions (this is important to keep in mind). Through BIG data management, it is possible not only to bring order to unstructured data, but also to derive value from the resulting configuration and any conclusions which can be drawn from deeper analysis.

In reality, it doesn’t matter whether or not an organization wants to deal with BIG data or not, they’re going to have to at some point. This is due to the fact that we live in the age of the internet, where there is simply no end to the amount of data that is collected and the overall amount that’s being transmitted on a daily basis just seems to keep growing at an exponential rate. But the goal shouldn’t be to simply keep pace with data expansion though, for many businesses there are valuable morsels of information which can be extracted from BIG data.

Aside from things like trending statistics and purchase habits per demographic, BIG data can highlight what customers and employees alike are really thinking about / working on. This might not seem like a big deal, but imagine being able to give customers exactly what they want (perhaps more) and being able to capitalize on all the abilities and talents of one’s employees. Likewise, there’s no better way to see what’s actually being done (from a solid business standpoint) apart from actually letting the data speak for itself.

There’s also the issue of speed; specifically, businesses being able to gain near real-time insights into what’s happening on multiple levels inside and outside of their organization at any given time. Certain technologies have emerged over the last few years which allow us to use, for example, the power of the cloud / elastic computing, to organize very large sets of data. Not only does this allow for more up-to-date integration of strategy, it also puts forth its own distinct value (in terms of consolidated knowledge).

By the same measure, this is helping to create a new area of competition among businesses of all shapes and sizes. For instance, many companies are moving toward initiating very “Google-like” policies. How so, you ask?  Once you realize that Google is essentially an online entity (not an organization that is prone to selling physical products) it becomes obvious that it a great example of how distinct value can be derived from BIG data management strategies. After all, the initial (and continuing) value of Google is really built from the value of its search algorithms and organization technologies (without these, Google wouldn’t be nearly as valuable). So, if you need proof of the value in BIG data management, look no further than Google, one of the most profitable and powerful companies the world has ever known!

For your average business or corporation, creating search algorithms might be a little bit out of character; however, there are still some ways that they can use BIG data to their advantage. One of the most immediate and sensible uses for the technology is strategy assistance. Let’s say that a company is using BIG data analysis to make better decisions about how to manage their actual manufacturing and production. By monitoring and breaking down customer records and near real-time data, businesses can make changes in capacity and production which might allow them to:

  • Get products / services to the right customers more quickly

  • Eliminate loss from over production

  • Avert risks

  • Bring products to market at the most sensible times

  • Etc…

Actually implementing a BIG data management strategy however might necessitate the use of adjunct technologies like Cloud Computing. Many experts are banking heavily on cloud computing for three principal reasons:

  • The cloud adoption rate for businesses is nearing the 50% mark

  • Cloud Computing is powerful enough to process BIG data management tasks in a timely manner

  • Arguably, using a cloud service to aid in BIG data management is one of the most affordable methods that can be implemented

The bottom line is, if you manage or own a business and have significant IT / online resources in place that collect data, you need to be thinking about a BIG data management strategy. If direct gains are not a concern, then adopting the technology in order to stave off competition is also a good reason. However, as previously stated, the data itself is going to continue pouring in from all directions anyway, why not use it to your advantage (let it service you instead of the other way around)?

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