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December 4, 2018

Analytics Use Grows in Parallel with Data Volumes

George Leopold

(everything possible/Shutterstock)

More companies are using data analytics to attract new customers, improve services for existing customers and to mitigate business risks by leveraging business intelligence and predictive analytics to make better decisions, according to a new vendor survey.

The analytics poll released this week by the research unit of Indian IT giant Infosys (NYSE: INFY) notes that data analytics tools are being augmented by AI, Internet of Things and cloud technologies as users look to move beyond getting their arms around data to using voluminous data sets to boost revenues.

Number crunchers in the financial and accounting sectors were found to be the heaviest enterprise users of data analytics, accounting for 32 percent of the more than 1,000 company executives surveyed. Meanwhile, 37 percent of respondents said the combination of AI technologies with analytics offered the most potential for business intelligence and predictive analytics applications. IoT and cloud technologies were cited by 19 percent and 16 percent, respectively.

Infosys and other IT vendors have sought to upgrade the use of AI technology via what the outsourcing giant calls it “purposeful approach to AI.” For example, the second generation of its Nia AI platform released last year builds on the automation of routine business processes to integrate big data analytics with machine learning, “cognitive automation” and “knowledge management.”

Analytics adopters nevertheless continue to encounter hurdles in rolling out data initiatives. Most often cited in the Infosys survey was a lack expertise in integrating multiple data sets, at 44 percent. That total reflects and ongoing data science skills gap along with an influx of unstructured data from edge devices, social media and exploding video traffic.

An equivalent percentage cited continuing difficulty in determining the analysis techniques best suited to their business. “This is where enterprises are looking up to their partners to help industrialize their analytics capabilities by creating an analytics strategy, build[ing] an operational framework, and defin[ing] a process for executing and governing analytics initiatives,” Infosys noted in releasing its survey results on Tuesday (Dec. 4).

Added H.C. Satish, head of data analytics at Infosys: “As enterprises work with [the] limitations of siloed systems, data integration issues, resources and skills, harnessing the possibilities with data will be essential to navigating their” efforts.

Infosys said it polled 1,062 senior executives at companies with revenues exceeding $1 billion. Respondents representing 12 industries were based in Australia, Europe and the United States.

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