Big data is very simple—it’s an extremely large set of data—but the confusing part is knowing what to do with all of that information. Big data can either be a tremendous asset to your business or a time-sapping mire.David McJannet, VP of marketing for Microsoft partner Hortonworks, provides a simplified definition to shed some light on what big data is and why it’s important:
Big data is about building new analytic applications based on new types of data, to better serve your customers and drive a better competitive advantage.
There are three key reasons data insights are important to your business:
  1. You can harvest intelligent data by using data solutions that comb the entire web and gather relevant information to create actionable analytics. Getting the right data is the first step to actionable insights.
  2. Empower employees with real-time insights by delivering data visualization to anyone in your organization. Data will be much more helpful if your employees can use it easily.
  3. Create a connected, data-driven organization that eliminates silos by connecting people through shared processes and data. Open the floodgates and give everyone access to data, and the insights driven by that data.
Two departments within most organizations that will be affected by more effective business insights are Marketing and Finance:
  1. Reimagine Marketing driven by deep customer insights to create engaging, personal advertising. Marketing can be more personal than ever before—one of the best ways for it to work effectively.
  2. Reimagine Finance by translating data into business impact. Assess and control risk, find ways to reduce cost, and strategize growth and competition. Predictive models will enable your business to anticipate changes most businesses were guessing at 10 years ago.
Big data is about driving actionable insights for your business. The data-driven organization will be able to better understand their customers and business challenges to provide a competitive advantage.