CIOs, Are You Minding The Big Data Gap?

by CXOtoday News Desk    Jul 08, 2015

big data

Companies today are saturated in data, but have a thirst for insights. And, as this phenomenal volume, variety and velocity of data continues to grow, companies are in a fix on how to use this data to create meaningful insights that give our company a competitive advantage. This is the observation from a recent KPMG study which notes while 97 percent of organizations around the globe claim to use data and analytics across the enterprise, only 19 percent are satisfied with the insights provided by such tools, says a study from KPMG.

In its new report titled: “Going Beyond the Data - Turning Data from Insights into Value,” KPMG researchers looked at a growing gap between how businesses currently use data/analytics and their ability to apply it to untapped areas of rich opportunity. “While it’s evident that businesses are becoming more adept at evaluating data to gain actionable insights, it’s the transformation from insights to value that proves to be the greatest challenge,” said Christian Rast, KPMG Global Head of D&A and a partner with KPMG in Germany.

According to the survey, 75 percent of respondents use data analytics tool mainly in the areas of R&D, supply chain, human resources and finance, with 47 percent of respondents confirming that improving productivity is the primary driver of their data analytics strategies.

Despite that, the current situation is a little worrisome. The report shows less than 25 percent firms currently use data analytics to identify new revenue streams, only 31 percent have used these tools to drive individualized marketing, and only 16 percent use data analytics to predict future trends. A big contrast is that while 97 percent of business leaders say they already use data and analytics to manage risk, over 58 percent still have difficulties evaluating data quality and reliability. Sufficient data skills is also a common challenge, with only 14 percent reporting they have all the talent and capabilities they need to fully leverage its potential.

The KPMG report is not the first of its kind to highlight the fact that companies love data but don’t fully understand it. A recent research report from Millward Brown Digital too reiterates this point, noting that “data rich, but insights poor” or in other words, making use of Big Data is what companies are faced with.

Despite considering big data analytics as the top priority of the year, only 14% companies can effectively using it, notes Millward Brown Digital in the report, with many of them complaining of having insufficient knowledge and training on how to use the available data to continually refine marketing programs.

Data analysed with deeper insights are seen to have brought tremendous gain to businesses and consumers, improving the company’s sales margin. As Nielsen CEO Mitch Barns said in an Esomar blog, “The future lies in combining the best of traditional research with new data and new approaches to generating and applying insight.” He believes the world is seeing accelerating growth in the amount and variety of useful information, thanks in large part to growth in digital, increasing mobile device penetration, hyper-connectivity and related trends.

“When we combine these new data sources with information from our high-quality panels and methods, we get the best of both worlds – high-quality, highly granular, highly descriptive information that, when used well, creates big new opportunities to improve the effectiveness and efficiency of our clients’ marketing, sales and innovation activities,” he says.