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Most firms ‘not managing their data effectively’

The vast majority of firms are finding it difficult to effectively convert the information they gather into effective business decisions, a new survey has found.

Figures from KPMG reveal that while 99 percent of senior executives recognize the importance of big data analytics to their operations, 96 percent agreed that they are not as effective at managing this as they could be.

The survey spoke to C-level executives at companies with annual revenues of over $1 billion and found three-quarters of these personnel admitted they find it difficult to make decisions using data and analytics (D&A) tools.

Mark Toon, chief executive of KPMG Capital, said: “We live in an increasingly data-driven world where D&A has the potential to revolutionize the way we conduct and manage business operations across the entire enterprise.”

He added that executives from all parts of an organization can benefit from implementing effective big data tools, from finance and marketing departments to IT. However, the key challenge will be for users to extract actionable insights from their data to produce tangible results.

Getting results quickly will be important, as 80 percent of respondents stated that speed is a central benefit of an effective data analytics strategy. Therefore, getting the right tools to achieve this will be vital.

But the survey found 85 percent of companies say their biggest challenge relating to analytics will be implementing the right solutions to study and interpret this data.

Other areas that firms must focus on include identifying which data to collect, as 54 percent of respondents said an inability to sport and analyze the most relevant information is a major barrier to success.

However, if the right skills and tools are in place, the potential is huge. Mr Toon said: “From social media-based analytics to predictive modeling, the available solutions are endless. And so are the applications – from risk management and cost optimization to identifying new revenue streams.

Kognitio has been a pioneer big data, having been at the forefront of every major innovation in the data warehouse and business analytics space for more than a generation. “The KPMG Survey points out that integration is an important part of solving the big data analytics puzzle,” said Michael Hiskey, head product evangelist at Kognitio.  “One of the major advantages of an in-memory analytical platform like Kognitio is that it can overcome that complexity and disorganization of data with brute-force parallelism.”  He further commented that while integration software is still a requirement for many applications, the issue pointed out in the study could be addressed handily with an analytical platform approach.