The ultimate guide to big data for businesses

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Big data is the fuel for today’s analytics applications. This in-depth big data guide explains how businesses can benefit from it and what they need to do to use it effectively.

Big data for businesses- big data for businessesThe development of big data technologies unlocked a treasure trove of information for businesses. Before that, BI and analytics applications were mostly limited to structured data stored in relational databases and data warehouses — transactions and financial records, for example. A lot of potentially valuable data that didn’t fit the relational mold was left unused. No more, though.

Big data environments can be used to process, manage and analyze many different types of data. The data riches now available to organizations include customer databases and emails, internet clickstream records, log files, images, social network posts, sensor data, medical information and much more.

Companies increasingly are trying to take advantage of all that data to help drive better business strategies and decisions. In a survey of IT and business executives from 85 large companies conducted by consultancy NewVantage Partners in late 2020, 91.9% said they were accelerating the pace of their investments in big data and related AI initiatives, while 96% reported successful outcomes from such projects.

However, even many of those blue-chip companies are struggling to maximize the business potential of their big data environments. Only 39.3% of the survey respondents said their organizations were managing data as a business asset, and just 24% said they had created a data-driven organization, according to a report on the annual survey that was published in January 2021.

To help companies both large and small get more value from the data flowing into their systems, this comprehensive guide to big data for businesses explains what it is, its business benefits, the challenges it poses and best practices for using it effectively. You’ll also find examples of big data use cases and an overview of big data technology. Throughout the guide, there are hyperlinks to related articles that cover those topics more deeply and offer expert advice on managing big data programs.

Why is big data important for businesses?

Before big data platforms and tools were developed, many organizations could use only a small fraction of their data in operational and analytics applications. The rest often got pushed to the side as so-called dark data, which is processed and stored but not put to further use. Effective big data management processes enable businesses to better utilize their data assets.

Being able to do so expands the kinds of data analytics that companies can run and the business value they can get. Big data creates increased opportunities for machine learning, predictive analytics, data mining, streaming analytics, text mining and other data science and advanced analytics disciplines. Using those disciplines, big data analytics applications help businesses better understand customers, identify operational issues, detect fraudulent transactions and manage supply chains, among other uses.

Read more at TechTarget