“How do I analyse my business data?”
By Ashton Perry
Googles search response details demonstrate that over 363,000,000 business leaders have asked this same question, while a further 750,000,000 ask the question “What is business data?” These staggering figures demonstrate that millions of businesses are looking to understand how they can better use their businesses data to drive fresh innovation and market development within their industry.
The first aspect of breaking down this question is understanding what exactly business data entails, defined as information that is used to plan and operate an organization, business data includes source data that a company collects such as customer numbers, sale conversions, energy expenditure, facilities information and market research. All these factors can entail thousands upon thousands of data points from multiple sources. It is in this area that organisations struggle to compress this into an easy to digest format that allows them to make effective business decisions that tailors to their industry needs and pushes their business forward.
This is where Analytics Service Providers (ASP) are striving forward in leaps and bounds to provide businesses with the power to seize control of their data in a simple and reliable format. No longer are the days when Chief Information Officers require a team of IT specialists and a NASA mission control worth of computing hardware to develop a clear understanding of their data. Allowing CEO’s the opportunity to drive their company forward, using the services of an ASP they are able to consolidate millions of terabytes of data in just minutes. Business intelligence or BI for short are computer processing software programs that encompasses a huge variety of areas such as data mining, analytics, event processing, performance management and benchmarking, however ASP’s make this process even simpler by providing an all-encompassing service. ASP’s provide industry figures the power to predict trends in business, evaluate current processes, make informed decisions and analyse strategies and decisions.
The pictures below demonstrate just how huge sources of data can be turned into an easy to read dashboard format, allowing business leaders the ability to quickly see the interactions of their data and how they can work to learn from this.
However, industry leading ASP’s aren’t just about setting up your data in an easy to digest format and leaving it to you, these company’s can provide a team that responds to your needs and gives business leaders the ability to make executive decisions thanks to the provision of regularly updated data insights from the creation of a visual analytics approach. A form of information visualization that focuses on analytical reasoning facilitated by interactive visual interfaces and helps companies to see a story in their data with the goal of developing market opportunity’s or allowing executives to identify problems and issues.
ASP’s use the scientific study of algorithms and statistical models to develop machine learning based computing systems to predict trends and identify relationships within a company, all the while removing the need for in house roles such as data analysts, database administrators and business analysts, leading to a reduction in costs and significant increase in efficiency.
Having identified both the need in todays globalising digital market for data analytics and having addressed the benefits of company’s which provide these services, it leaves a singular question that 1,360,000,000 Google users have asked, “Why should my business use data analytics?”
When Analytics Service Provider, Datore started working with luxury travel company Flight Centre they already had an established approach to analysing the vast amounts of data they produce on a daily basis. Flight Centre has company-owned operations in 23 countries and a corporate travel management network that spans more than 90 countries. It employs more than 19,000 people globally and has a total of 2800 businesses. However, their ever-increasing need for analytical insights meant they needed to develop this into a High Availability and more powerful solution. Expanding their solution to over 1,000 data viewers and more than 30 analysts in the UK alone would require not just an increase in computing power, but also updated software and business processes.
Datore was able to deploy a program within a rapid timeframe by utilising their global team of data specialists to ensure maximum efficiency and a follow the sun approach to a complex upgrade deployment. As a result, Flight Centre experienced zero downtime to any of its business critical analytical operations which saved the company tens of thousands in time, resources and costs that rely on this data every single day.
As such, the benefits of data analytics and ASP’s in assisting industry needs is clear. The use of a Business Intelligence approach gives business executives the power to steer their company’s in new directions and as the world of industry continues to move into a more digitally complex landscape, it is the business leaders that truly understand the value of their data who will not only survive, but continue to thrive in an ever connected digital marketplace. So, the real question you should be asking as an industry leader is, “Why am I not using my business data?”