“What can Big Data Do for me?” – Business Head at a leading Bank.
This is by far the single most frequent question that I have seen customers ask us. And these are across enterprises of all sizes, shapes and industry. And I don’t blame the customer for not knowing what they want from big data.
The potential is limitless. From Facebook analyzing your behavior and then map the right advertisements on your homepage, to insurers scouting social channels to price your next policy, it is all happening. The application of big data in a business to consumer set up is pretty straight forward and can get very creative.
However the case for big data in a business to business set up may not be so straightforward. Infact, a lot of SME organizations don’t even know if they have a big data problem to begin with. A big (pun intended) misconception that a lot of enterprises have is related to the size of the data under question. Large data set have existed for a long time now. What differentiates large data from big data is a combination of the 6Vs.
Enough has been said about the 4 Vs – Volume, Velocity, Veracity and Variety. What we’ve found interesting are the 2 additional Vs –Visibility and Value.
Let us look at Value first. In its elementary form it is an indicator of the relevance of the data. Not all data is relevant. By discarding irrelevant data, on a case to case basis, it is possible to develop much sharper analysis. In our trends report earlier, we wrote about the development of deep learning capabilities and how that will leverage valuable data.
Visibility, is the relevancy of the data in the data bureaucracy. Is the organization aware of all the data it generates, stores? These could be (seemingly) inconsequential data logs, or other such records.
Now that we have a complete (for now) set of variables we need to keep in mind, let us get back to the main question – ‘What can big data do for me? And, do I have a big data problem to begin with?’ Well, if your data meets any 2 of the Vs, then yes, you do have a big data problem to deal with. But rather than look at is as a problem, think of it as an opportunity. Yes, sounds clichéd.
Traditionally, any sort of business intelligence, reporting, or analytics has been the responsibility of the technology or operations team. Now, we are seeing an increased ownership by the business itself. Business wants to know what next, and is ok to use the analytics tools themselves.
What Big Data can do for you, can then be looked at what function you’re closest to – Customer, Risk or Operations. There are a myriad of other functions too that are layered between the three, but these are closest to see best use of data.
What if your data could tell you what to look act on? Self generating insights based on appropriation rules?
What your data can do for you is limited only by your imagination.