Decision-makers still struggling to use insights from big data

While business decision-makers agree that being able to access and analyse big data will be a critical requirement for all employees in the future, current employees’ ability to use that data is lagging need, according to a recent survey conducted by Wakefield Research and SAP.

A poll of business decision-makers found that 61 per cent believe their company data is not being used to its full potential, and about 25 per cent say their companies are doing a less than average job of using data to make key decisions.

“With more than half of the survey respondents saying they don’t use their companies data to its full potential, it’s clear that there is an opportunity for companies to leverage data discovery tools in order to help with decision-making,” said Jayne Landry, global vice president and general manager of business intelligence, SAP.

“The overwhelming amount of data in business today means we’re all going to have to become more data-savvy. Knowing what happened is no longer enough, we need to understand why it happened, what will happen next or even what the best that can happen is. And these types of insights are no longer confined to a handful of small experts in an organisation – everyone within an organisation should have the ability to contribute their knowledge and derive insights from data.”

Clearly a disconnect exists between the slow efforts of today and the vision of the future, as 86 per cent of those decision makers said eventually all employees in a company will need to become “data geeks” – that is having the skills to not only analyse data but make decisions based on that analysis.

In the past five years, the number of employees who can access company data and use it to make decisions has risen to 50 per cent from 33 per cent.