Mid-sized Firms Too Drive Big Data Adoption

by CXOtoday News Desk    Apr 29, 2014

big data

Big data is no longer confined to large enterprises. According to a recent Dell survey, 41% of midmarket businesses have one or more big data projects already in place, with another 55% planning to start one soon.

More midmarket firms plan to use big data analysis to grow their businesses, rather than find ways to cut costs, according to the survey that interviewed over 300 IT decision makers in midmarket organizations from the US, EMEA, and Asia-Pacific regions.

The survey states that 80% respondents agree they need to better analyze their expanding data collections. Their top goals include improve product quality, seize business opportunities and speed decision-making. Nine of 10 reported significant improvements in company decision making with big data initiatives.

Encouraged by early success, respondents expect big data budgets to rise from between $2 million and $5 million up to an average of $6 million in the next two years as companies invest more in hardware, software and training, says Dell.

It adds that the biggest drivers of big data project success are IT and business collaboration, adequate skills, and performance management to gauge the effects of big data initiatives. The most influential departments in big data projects are IT and sales/marketing.

Dell survey finds the most valuable technologies for midmarket companies running big data initiatives are real-time data processing, predictive analytics and data visualization tools. All these technologies and tools provide better quality products and services, take advantage of new business opportunities, and improve the quality and speed of decision-making. These tools also enable companies get a better understanding of customer needs, have the ability to respond quickly to competitive threats, and improve the effectiveness of their marketing programs.

According to Dell researchers, though many midmarket companies are getting started with big data projects, those projects have had an immediate and positive impact on their organization’s productivity and success. Over 50% of organizations with a big data initiative in place are satisfied with the quality and speed of their decision making, compared to 23%  of those yet to kick off a big data project.

“The early success midmarket companies are seeing with their big data initiatives will encourage more growth and investment, and additional returns on that investment will be achieved as they dive further into different datasets and embrace ever-improving analytic capabilities.” says Darin Bartik, executive director, product management, information management, Dell Software.

The report however states that most mid-market firms are yet to incorporate social media and other Big Data sources into their analytics mix, which means a potentially significant source of analytic insight remains largely untapped. Bartik believes while the cost and complexity have kept some areas of opportunity yet unexplored, with improvement in technology, investment in big data-related projects in this segment will be on the rise.