- 10/10/2014 2:59:57 PM
@Dave, you're right -- it is about a mix. The important thing is that the business talk to IT and IT to the business about what data is available, what data needs to be available, what sorts of questions the business needs answered... and then what analytics tools and data infrastructure will be needed to support all of that. These discussions should take place everyday, I'd say, and include people responsible for business decisions, IT, the analysis and modeing itself, and data management/governance. Oh, and a high-level executive champion would be nice as well.
- by SethBreedlove, Data Doctor
- 10/10/2014 2:37:23 PM
@ Beth, I have to say I agree with you. I keep hearing how this sever or this technology can store data cheaper, faster and retrieve faster, but not so much on how to analyze it. I have a heard of a couple of new things such as data being stored in a way to make it easier to analyze later recently, but it is still new. Storing all this data cheaply and quickly doesn't mean much if it isn't being used.
- by tomskaczmarek, Prospector
- 10/10/2014 1:05:59 PM
Isn't it time for the IT organizations to start applying analytics to their own business performance management? Maybe they would find opportunites to live with their budgets and still have resources to do more investigations.
- by Jamescon, Editor
- 10/9/2014 8:52:59 AM
@Dave. I think one problem that CIOs have is that they are handcuffed in a way. Their mandate for years, even before the dawn of big data, has been to do more with the data that the company has (typically transactional data) and do it with less (money/people). That mandate on transactional data hasn't been lifted, and the 3 percent budget increases that they have been getting is just enough to keep the IT trains running. It certainly isn't enough to expand their scope to outside data sources and to revolutionize the IT operation. So, the marketing group runs off on their own.
I believe that's what happens in typical companies, and the irony is that there already are signs that marketing is subsequently calling IT and asking how they can tie their outside services into the core enterprise systems for expanded decision making capabilities (and security).
A few smart companies are using the big data concept and cloud to revamp their whole information strategy, which means tossing out the old mandates (and some old ways of doing things in both IT and business units), and making the monetary and resource commitment to doing things right. But they are too few.
- by Jamescon, Editor
- 10/9/2014 8:44:39 AM
@Curt. I agree to the point that the Mom and Pop store or that plumbing supply company will be left behind by this initial wave of big data use for business. However, I don't think it's a permanent thing. In fact, I think there is a ton of opportunity to use big data in the lower half of the SMB market (the S in SMB). True, they wouldn't be out writing their own algoritms to see why sales of widgets are trending downward.
But, suppose that there were big data focused services out there that served entire industry sectors or multiple sectors in a region. By collecting data from all those plumbing supply companies (and plumbers and contractors and realtors) the service supporting decision making for that plumbing supply company could churn that data and see that customers who used to buy widgets are shifting over to whatchamacallits for new construction on a national basis.
For the Mom and Pop retailer, let's say they are in a vacation/weekend destination like where I live. They see news items saying that X number of people are likely to be traveling the state on Columbus Day weekend. It's a big number, but it's also a guess by the state tourist bureau. Before Mom and Pop bring in a couple of extra helpers for the weekend, they want to know how the weather forecast and the foliage reports are likely to impact travel and shopping. Are tourists likely to be off in the mountains seeing leaves change (leaves do change in my part of the world)? Or will they be stuck in motel rooms because of rain, looking for a place to buy moose-decorated tee-shirts made 10,000 miles away?
Services that provide that type of insight have a great opportunity in the SMB market in my opinion.
- 10/8/2014 7:39:34 PM
@Beth- I see that viewpoint. And if I were a CIO, I'd certainly take that point of view. But I'm starting to think that analytics takes an entire organization taking responsibility for data and technology.
I'm starting to think that maybe the business side should lead the analytics charge with IT serving the drivers. This isn't to take away from IT. I have utmost respect for IT pros, but ultimately, asking IT to figure out anayltics for a company seems to be asking them to learn to do every other job at the company.
There's some sort of level of partnership required, and probaly all we're talking about is the mix. I guess the real key is we need leaders everywhere on every side. But i don't think IT can drive unless there are some people on the business driving, too. Instead of leading the charge, I think IT needs to something like a cheesy Hollywood movie and hold hands with the business and charge together. That makes it even harder but more effective.
- 10/8/2014 7:33:44 PM
@Dave, we've discussed the phenomenon here a bit, largely stemming from research iDC has done. Its contention, and I somewhat agree, is that big data really ought to be the impetus that gets CIOs to take back control. IT needs to lead the charge in creating an enterprise big-data strategy, for example, and creating a single version of the truth out of diverse datasets. It's now or never!
- 10/8/2014 6:22:19 PM
@Beth- Yup, that fits the description of most CIOs I've watched. I've seen stats that show that already more than half of IT spending is controlled by departments besides IT. I believe Gartner predicted 57% of IT budget will be controlled by the CMO by 2017.
Whether through their fault or some other reason, analytics is taking money from the CIO.
- 10/8/2014 6:19:38 PM
@dave, pity the CIO thinks that analytics means having a good database and a Hadoop stack. That's the CIO who has seen analytics strategy taken over by smart line of business managers who have data galore and the gumption to analyze it on their own.
- 10/8/2014 5:24:14 PM
@curt-oooh...soiunds like a great session. Being an analytical company means changing your staff mindset I would think. Where being a company with analytics just takes a CIO with a good datanase team and a Hadoop stack.
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