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Big Data: Only for the Privileged Few?

By January 13, 2014Article

For all the hype around Big Data, the ugly truth is that not many organizations are really getting full value from their Big Data investments. In reality only the privileged few have the funding, the rarefied skills and the technology assets to analyze and act on their Big Data to drive material bottom-line improvements.  The result has been that almost 90 percent of the potential value of Big Data is trapped under the waterline, much like an iceberg.  

But it’s 2014 and it’s time to move beyond the hype and into an era where the benefits of Big Data are universally available. At Actian, that’s our passion. And it’s the essence of our platform that is Accelerating Big Data 2.0™.   

It means that any organization, large or small, should be able to create profound operational transformation from their Big Data — often inspired and led by a visionary change agent Sand Hill Group tags as the “Chief Transformation Officer.” This person brings the power of Big Data analytics to the line of business managers that can use the results to make informed decisions. 

A great example is the retail giant Future Group, which implemented its own Big Data 2.0 architecture on the Actian Analytics Platform to deliver highly customized customer experience and deepen customer loyalty for the more than 300 million customers who walk into its stores annually. Future Group supports analytics for cross-cultural affinity, market basket analysis, supply chain optimization and campaigns including mobile coupons, price and markdown optimization and even store energy analytics. 

As Future Group CIO and CTO Parakh Dave told me, “We’ve gone from being in react mode to being out in front of our business users by providing timely analytical reports on margin analysis so that new promotions can be created on a daily basis.” 

Big Data 2.0 means that anyone has the ability to utilize a diverse set of data sources to create impactful analytics. Often this is only practically possible on completely modern software that connects data from any source and rapidly provides insights that enable business decisions. 

It means being able to analyze huge and growing volumes of data in seconds to prompt meaningful business action — to exploit fleeting opportunities or head off imminent risks before the “moment of truth” passes. It means real business advantage that creates daylight between your organization and your competitors. And it means, for example, giving the power of Big Data to line-of-business people tasked with front-line operations to make informed decisions — in the call center, in marketing programs, in manufacturing — not just an elite circle of data scientists. 

For this, you need a platform that effortlessly fans in data from all information sources that matter to your business and delivers unconstrained analytics to detect business opportunities across all your data so that you can innovate constantly. This does not mean you need to rip and replace your existing technology investments; instead, your analytics platform can complement and extend your existing assets and grow with your business. The result: actionable insights that let you act on opportunities as they occur at a cost and speed that make business sense. 

At Actian, we’ve successfully helped thousands of customers worldwide, from Fortune 50 companies to startups, create transformational value at disruptive price/performance points. I invite you to learn more at our upcoming Webinar with EMA Group’s Shawn Rogers January 22 on “New Opportunities Arising: Are You Ready for Big Data 2.0? 

The time for every organization to exploit their data is now. We all know that legacy stacks that are slow, expensive, brittle and unable to scale just won’t cut it. At the same time the new generation of nascent technologies continues to be in unending pilots because they don’t deliver an enterprise-grade, proven platform that scales to the needs of customers. By contrast, a Big Data 2.0 platform delivers seamless, scalable, unconstrained analytics that give people across your whole organization actionable insights that truly are transformational. 

Ashish Gupta is CMO and SVP business development at Actian. Ashish has 20+ years’ experience in enterprise software companies, creating scalable go-to-market approaches and product portfolios that become category leaders. Ashish was formerly at Vidyo, where the company grew to be the leading software-based videoconferencing platform. He led business development and strategy, marketing and corporate sales for Microsoft Lync at Microsoft Office Division and was also VP of product and solutions at Alcatel/Genesys Telecommunications and VP of marketing and business development at Telera Inc.  







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