Big Data may not be a term often discussed outside the CIO’s office today, but according to experts at ICC, a leader in business technology services with a focus on Big Data and application development, that will change in 2013. That’s the year Big Data will find its way out of the data center and back rooms – typically populated by statisticians and business analysts – and into the offices of the chief financial officer (CFO), chief marketing officer (CMO) and chief sales officer (CSO), who are charged with growing revenue. Everyone will soon be busy making sense of the mountains of information Big Data technologies like website traffic logs, RFID, social media, online transactions and medical records have made available for analysis. ICC Big Data experts have identified the top five reasons that Big Data is poised to provide insights that c-suite executives will find too important to ignore in 2013.
“Technology advances in hardware and software have converged to allow average business folks to begin asking questions against the mountain of data once thought impossible to analyze if for no other reason than its sheer size,” says Jim Gallo, National Director of Business Analytics for ICC. “New insights will come from sources that were previously impossible to analyze. Today, businesses can leverage the entire Web as a data source, and that’s huge.”
Today, an ecosystem of predictive analytics firms is building solution sets around Hadoop, the de facto standard for managing massive, unstructured data sets. This is allowing Big Data to come out of the statistical closet to start answering real-world business problems as well as providing insights into everything including the correct inventory of shoes to maintain based on correlations between sales trends from big box stores, twitter feeds from ”Project Runway” and possibly current hair styles.
In 2013, ICC believes there are five reasons Big Data will offer big opportunities to businesses that invest in collecting and understanding the massive amount of information that now comprises their worlds.
Like virtualization and cloud computing, the business rationale for Big Data spending will quickly become obvious. The cost for Big Data analytics is pennies-on-the-dollar compared to the cost for a traditional data warehouse. Big Data is leaner, significantly reduces data integration costs, and opens the door for data exploration like never before.
In addition to the well-respected open source Hadoop community, established players like IBM, EMC, SAP, SAS, and Oracle have joined the Big Data game, enabling companies to have faith that their investment in Big Data won’t be lost as start-ups come and go and the hype cycle inevitably fades.
Companies big (and small) will begin to see positive ROI from the insights Big Data provides into their businesses and the businesses of their competitors, ultimately delivering positive ROI with bottom- and top-line impact.
Once company executives experience the unrivaled insights Big Data analytics brings to marketing campaigns, and how Big Data enables them to wrap their arms around customers like never before, they will be hooked.
Big Data-as-a-service (BDaaS) providers like ICC will emerge offering more than just platforms, analytics or human resources. By including the entire stack rolled up into an easily consumed service, companies of all sizes – from start-ups to mature organizations – will be able to take advantage of this emerging business.