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Accenture report shows businesses satisfied with Big Data ROI
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Accenture report shows businesses satisfied with Big Data ROI 

Stephen Gardiner, managing director, Accenture Digital in Canada, shared his perspective on the study’s significant findings.

Accenture’s researchers found that enterprises reported a higher ROI on Big Data initiatives than smaller businesses. “The reason for that is that large companies tend to have access to large customer bases. They have more data to analyze,” explained Gardiner. He provided the following example: a company that has 5,000 customers will gain more from analyzing their clients’ data than a business with five customers because there will be more information to examine and analysts will be able to see a broader picture as well as pinpoint trends.

Although enterprises have a larger customer base and therefore a larger pool of data, that does not mean that smaller businesses cannot benefit from Big Data. “Smaller companies tend to serve larger companies,” Gardiner commented. One of the ways in which SMBs can derive value from Big Data is by understanding Big Data trends and how companies are using Big Data. Furthermore, larger companies have begun selling information to smaller firms, allowing these businesses to gain the advantage of learning more about potential and current customers. Gardiner added that some SMBs have started gathering their own information about their clients and partners, which means they can add value to their products or services.

The rise of Big Data has led to a shortage of qualified people to analyze this information. Gardiner acknowledged that the ability to analyze data will become a core competency for companies in the future. However, he pointed out that analyzing data is not enough. Gardiner asserted that companies need to look at what he called “creative analytics.” Creative analytics means looking at information and asking what a business can do with it to derive value from it. Gardiner remarked that creative analytics requires “entrepreneurial” skills, and currently, companies lack employees with that mindset.

Big Data’s popularity has also led to big security risks. “When you bring disparate sources of data together, you can create a full picture of individuals and companies,” Gardiner commented. As a result, many firms that have invested in Big Data solutions are also purchasing security products and services to protect valuable information. Gardiner added that the field of security is constantly improving, and many businesses are aware of the risks posed by criminals seeking to exploit valuable information.

How do Canadian businesses stack up against their counterparts abroad when it comes to Big Data solutions? Gardiner noted that Canadian companies invest in Big Data services and products, and that they derive value from these purchases. They largely use Big Data analytics to be more efficient, rather than analyzing customer information. Gardiner believes this approach does not benefit Canadian businesses. Analyzing customer data allows firms to generate new ideas that will better allow it to serve its clients, thus adding more value to its products or services. “That could change the game,” Gardiner declared.

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