Big data analytics solutions are becoming increasingly central to the operations of businesses, as opposed to being handed off to standalone programmes away fro day-to-day operations, new research has found.

A study conducted by the International Institute for Analytics on behalf of Dell found more than seven out of ten firms say they are actively using advanced analytics tools in their everyday decision-making, or have plans to do so in the near future.

The research also illustrated how many companies expect the technology to deliver a real competitive advantage to their operations, with nearly two-thirds of respondents rejecting suggestions that big data is just a fad.

Indeed, professionals polled indicated they are using big data analytics for a wide variety of tasks. Nearly half stated they use advanced analytics to predict their firm’s financial performance, while around 40 per cent highlighted tasks that involve customer recruitment, retention, loyalty programs and product usage habits.

Raman Sapra, executive director and global head of Dell Digital Business Services commented that the study shows there is a clear belief among businesses that advanced analytics solutions will offer significant benefits to their operation, and continued investments will help the technology mature.

"Companies and leaders across industries are at a tipping point," he added. "We're seeing our customers place a higher priority on using advanced analytics to execute on their digital business models."

However, the research did indicate that there is still work to do for many firms if big data analytics is to become a part of everyday operations. Only five per cent of respondents said they have already achieved the highest levels of maturity for their analytics programmes, which suggests businesses are still scratching the surface when it comes to uncovering big data's potential.

Mr Sapra observed: "Ultimately, business leaders want to develop digital business models that enable them to attract, serve, and retain customers in the digital era. Advanced analytics provides that actionable insight that enables their transformation."