Using big data and analytics can deliver many benefits including better insights into customer behaviour and greater operational efficiency, but there are risks to using the technology.
That was the consensus of a panel discussion on the subject of big data and analytics for increasing enterprise operations efficiency and effectiveness, which took place at Computing’s Big Data & Analytics Summit 2015 at the Waldorf Hilton Hotel in central London.
Shane Green, ICT business analyst at the London Borough of Camden, said big data and analytics tools had advanced to such an extent that a data query that would have once taken two weeks to fulfil now only takes two minutes.
Green said that by using the latest analytics tools, Camden Council can deliver better and faster services to its residents.
But this exponential increase in analytics power can tempt organisations to gather and analyse every bit of data that comes their way. This is a temptation that should be resisted, the panel said.
Jonathan Gill, IT director at Watchfinder, argued that organisations “must only ask the customer for data you absolutely need to use”.
“It’s tempting to get the customer’s entire life history, but just control [that urge],” he added.
Matthew Fryer, VP of global analytics at Hotels.com, argued that if you tell customers you want information about them in to order to provide them with a better, more personal service, they are usually happy to oblige.
Earlier in the day, Jean-Michel Franco, director of product marketing for data governance at Talend, told the audience that the key to a successful big data strategy is empowering leaders in your organisation.
“It’s about picking people in the organisation … you make them officially accountable [for the overarching big data strategy] and bring them the right tools in order to bring value to the organisation,” he said.
Exclusive Computing research launched at the Big Data & Analytics Summit demonstrates how when it comes to big data, the revolution in self-service analytics starts now.