Tips for enterprise CIOs looking for Big Data

The need for mobility and improved connectivity in organizations is fueling the growth for Big Data.

The latest trends indicate that enterprises are opting for highly customized, easy-to-deploy solutions. They are seeking specialized, real-time analytic solutions that will help them gauge customer experience and improve revenue streams.

Sundar Ram, Oracle

In a recent interaction with Infotech Lead, Sundar Ram, vice president, Technology Sales Consulting, Asia Pacific, Oracle, says analytics will in fact become part of every application – from ERP to HRM, CRM, customer experience, and supply chain management software.

There will be a growth in the adoption of Predictive analytics by not just Search and Social Networking companies but also by an increasing number of enterprises, regardless of their company size.

Firms who leverage Big Data models for predictive analytics will be able to anticipate customer needs better; understand trends and respond to them in real time; and have better collaboration between the firm’s employees as well as their end customers, Ram added.

CIOs must understand how best to leverage big data for their organization, since the amount of data generated is only expected to grow with each passing day. To derive real business value from big data, CIO’s will require the right tools which will help their organization to capture and organize a wide variety of data types from different sources. Also, these tools should be able to easily analyze it within the context of all their enterprise data.

Ram suggests enterprise CIOs may follow the following five tips before selecting Big Data and analytics solutions.

Align Big Data initiative with specific business goals: One of the key characteristics of big data is value – value through low-density and high volumes of data. As we sort through the mountains of low-value-density Big Data and look for the gold nugget, do not lose sight of why we are doing this. Follow an enterprise architecture approach. Focus on the value it provides to the business. How does it support and enable the business objectives? Properly align and prioritize big data implementation with the business drivers. This is critical to ensure sponsorship and funding for the long run.

Ensure centralized IT strategy for standards and governance: User departments may be tempted to buy in decentralized fashion which can result in IT standards and governance being compromised. It is critical therefore that CIOs upfront insist on standards and governance not being compromised while at the same time promoting agility.

Ensure security for Big Data: Enterprises worldwide have ranked IT security as one of their top priorities as increasingly sophisticated attacks, new data protection regulations, and most recently insider fraud and data breaches, threaten to disrupt and irreparably damage their businesses. Security in the Big Data world is even more crucial. Enterprises should invest in integrated security solutions to ensure that big data insights generated from the integration of old world structured data and the new world unstructured data is not compromised in any way.

Correlate Big Data with structured data:  Analysis from big data in itself has limited relevance. It is when such findings are correlated with the existing enterprise data such as past purchase history, customer demographics etc., that the true value can be extracted in the form of for example better segmentation models or more targeted up sell schemes and so on,

Look at Big Data as an extension of existing information architecture: Enterprises should look at big data investment as an extension to their existing information architecture. As mentioned above, the true value is found when big data insights are combined with existing enterprise data but that is not easily done if separate silos are created which potentially do not follow the existing enterprise IT standards.

Oracle sees big opportunities for Big Data. According to a recent Oracle survey, six out of ten companies have more data than they can use effectively, yet most executives claim that they are not getting the information they need to make important decisions—with 93 percent of them losing revenue as a result. In response, IT strategies are changing fast. Formulating a big data strategy with analytics is central to deriving value from corporate investments, Ram added.

Rajani Baburajan

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