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The spread of social media, e-commerce, digital marketing, and the plethora of data captured off many industrial practices means that big data is getting really big. A huge amount of data about anything and everything is being captured. The ability to show correlations with big data analytics is practically a given, but the track record of showing causation has been less than spectacular. Incorrect selection of datasets, pre-programmed biases, and unaccounted values all plague the ability to draw real insights from the use of big data; companies large and small are looking into better ways of thinking and working these large bits of information into a meaningful whole.</p> <p>We know that companies that can seize the opportunities presented by proper analysis of big data have the ability to gain a competitive advantage. The challenge, however, is to use all that data and translate it into meaningful and actionable outcomes.
Big data analytics helps organizations harness their data and use it to identify new opportunities. That, in turn, leads to smarter business moves, more efficient operations, higher profits and happier customers. In his report Big Data in Big Companies, IIA Director of Research Tom Davenport interviewed more than 50 businesses to understand how they used big data. He found they got value in the following ways: