Big Data Analytics
Good business decisions are based on high quality data and information. Canadian businesses are beyond the notion that “going with your gut” is effective for decision making. The truth is that companies are now more and more working under the assumption that the more information the better when making decisions. Therefore, decisions are based on analytics of large volumes of data. This has led to the rise of big data and big data analytics.
Understanding big data analytics
The rise of big data analytics can be attributed to the growing amount of data that is being collected and stored by organizations and the inability of traditional data warehousing techniques and strategies to process and analyse this information in an efficient and meaningful manner.
Big data analytics is different from data warehousing and reporting technologies in the sense that they can effectively manage very large data sets. These data sets include both structured and unstructured data that comes from a wide variety of sources and internet applications. Some of these sources include:
- Social networking comments
- Sensor data
- Internet clickstreams
- Website data
- Traffic numbers
Big data analytics also differs from traditional means because of their ability to provide answers in relation to historic data and trends as well as forecasted data.
Still very much in its infancy, big data analytics provide faster and more accurate methods to report value from data sets and its capabilities will continue to evolve and become more diverse as technology in this field develops.
Benefits of big data analytics
The use of big data analytics continues to grow within all Canadian industries because of the benefits it offers:
The ability to manage both structured and unstructured data
- The ability to collect information and data from a number of data sources simultaneously
- Improved scalability
- Increased data processing time
- The potential for close to real time data analytics
Big data analytic practical uses
Here are some of the Canadian companies and industries that will benefit most from the implementation of big data analytics into their business:
Web analytics: With improved scalability, internet companies and websites of varying sizes will benefit in the sense that they can refine and target online advertising, and improve analytics and understanding related to user behavior, traffic analysis, and forecasting future projects and initiatives.
- Telecommunications: Media and communications companies can more effective and quickly collect data from multiple devices and gain insights about consumer behaviour and preference.
- Supply chain and logistics: With the use of GPS, shipment tracking, and handheld devices and scanners, supply chain and manufacturing companies can benefit from the increased speed and ability of big data analytic technologies. It can help them refine their routes, and operate more efficiently.
- Retail: Retail companies will have the ability to better analyze large quantities of inventory and sales data to uncover patterns and trends.
- Health care: Complex medical records and records systems can be refined and improves to allow for increase analysis in terms of treatment options and analysis in clinical studies.
The challenge for big data analytics implementation
While the IT industry is definitely headed for an industry wide adoption of big data analytics, many Canadian companies are still not in a position to adopt the technology. Since it is a new development, companies lack the understanding and the professionals who have the ability to effective utilize big data technologies. Therefore, expect innovate companies to make the switch in the near future, and the bulk of companies will follow suit down the road.
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