Is big data the next ‘BIG’ thing
Managing and analyzing data have always offered the greatest benefits and the greatest challenges for organizations of all sizes and across all industries. Businesses have long struggled with finding a pragmatic approach to capturing information about their customers, products, and services. With the evolution of firms from being product centric to customer centric, there has always been a need to collect, organise and analyse large sets of data in order to discover patterns, correlations and trends which help not only to market the product in an effective way but also cater specifically to the needs of the customer, better known as segmentation and targeting.
With new advances in computing technology, there’s no need to avoid tackling even the most difficult and challenging business problems. For simpler and faster processing of only relevant data, you can use high-performance analytics. Using high-performance data mining, predictive analytics, text mining, forecasting and optimization on big data enables you to continuously drive innovation and make the best possible decisions. The sudden boom of big data has led to the conception of numerous platforms such as NoSQL databases, Hadoop and MapReduce. With the right big data analytics platforms in place, an enterprise can boost sales, increase efficiency, and improve operations, customer service and risk management.
Big Data is all about finding a needle of value in a haystack of unstructured information. McKinsey released a report in May 2011 stating that leading companies are using big data analytics to gain competitive advantage, furthermore, they predict a 60% margin increase for companies who are able to harvest the power of big data. A number of firms have put big data to good use, including wireless giants Verizon who now each and every one of their customers specifically, in order to provide complete satisfaction.Tesco was also able to avert competition from retail goliaths
Wal-Mart by doing research on customer buying patterns and providing incentives to people in just the right ways.Netflix mined its subscriber data to put the essential ingredients together for its recent hit House of Cards.
Since the surge of big data is in a developing phase, there several challenges associated with it too. Consider the sheer volume and velocity of unstructured data present in a firm and the amount of specialisation required to decipher it. Such data is extremely difficult to process via traditional database management system and other software methods.Potential pitfalls that can trip up organizations on big data analytics initiatives include a lack of internal analytics skills and the high cost of hiring experienced analytics professionals, plus challenges in integrating Hadoop systems and data warehouses.