Big data is no longer a buzzword, it’s here and changing everything. In fact, big data is helping companies across all industries answer real-world business problems as well as provide insights into everything including consumer preferences, inventory and Twitter (News - Alert) feeds. According to research, 87 percent of marketers agree that capturing and sharing the right data is important to effectively measuring ROI in their own company and 70 percent of C-suite executives expect a return on their big data investments within one year.
Big data and its impact on business was the topic of discussion at today’s CIO Roundtable titled “Rationalizing the Dataverse – How Big Data is Changing Everything” at ITEXPO 2014 featuring an impressive panel of big name companies including Tery Howard, Senior VP, CTO ,Miami Dolphins, Naresh Adurty, Architect, Teradata (News - Alert) , and Herman Nell, CIO Rent-A-Center.
For the Miami Dolphins and Rent-A-Center, big data is helping to understand consumer habits and preferences, which can be analyzed to improve the customer experience. However, it doesn’t come without its challenges. According to Howard, the biggest challenge is actually understanding what big data is and making a cultural change throughout the entire organization from marketers to the C-suite. Moreover, understanding which data points are most important and connecting the dots in real-time as well as making a valuable business case for big data are additional challenges.
“You have two approaches to big data. You can either go and create a data mark and analyze it to death or you can first identify a specific problem that needs to be fixed and use big data as a solution to that problem,” said Nell.
Panelists also agree that there’s a need for more skilled “data scientists” who can look at the data to extract patterns and “nuggets” of important information. However, as Adurty said, business people know business and IT knows IT. Business people are the only ones who can find these “nuggets,” therefore IT needs to make more user-friendly interfaces to help bridge the gap.
As for the future, Nell eluded it to perfectly when he said “There’s no way small companies can stay ahead of curve; therefore we will need to rely on experts in the industry to help.”
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Edited by Cassandra Tucker