SAS survey signals big data disconnect; only 12 percent on  board

Despite industry hype, most organizations have yet to develop and implement a big data strategy. Business analytics leader SAS and SourceMedia surveyed 339 data management professionals about their organizations' use of data management technology. The results show few organizations taking advantage of product, customer and other data sources.

Just 12 percent of organizations surveyed are currently executing against a big data strategy in daily operations. The most common reasons others are not fully exploiting their big data:

  • 21 percent don't know enough about big data.
  • 15 percent don't understand the benefits.
  • 9 percent lack business support.
  • 9 percent lack data quality in existing systems.

For help getting started with big data, read the white paper Big Data, Data Governance and MDM about the business requirements for big data and the questions to ask along the way.

"The 12 percent of organizations that are already planning around big data enjoy a significant competitive advantage," said Todd Wright, Global Product Marketing Manager for SAS® DataFlux® Data Quality. "SAS customers can harness the full power in their data with a comprehensive approach to information management. Our integrated solutions, tools, methodologies and workflows can enable organizations to manage big data as a valued asset, driving core operational processes and strategic decision making to increase competitive edge."

Lack of data quality, data governance hinders efforts

Asked about the likelihood that their organizations would use external big data in 2014, just 14 percent of respondents said "very likely," while 19 percent responded "not likely at all." Specific concerns included data quality and accuracy, accessing the right data, reconciling disparate data, lack of organizational view into data, timeliness, compliance, and security.

The survey found no real consensus on who owns the data management strategy, with responses ranging from midlevel IT personnel up to the CEO. This confusion likely causes additional challenges in data strategy development and execution.

Atop the data management wish list: data visualization and dashboards, data profiling, SaaS

Most respondents call detailed data analysis a priority for supporting business decisions, along with increased internal reporting and information access. When asked what they want from data solutions, the number one answer was data visualizations and dashboards (73 percent), data profiling (53 percent), and SaaS (44 percent).

Customer and product data top the data types collected by organizations. The types of customer data being collected to make decisions were business-to-consumer (66 percent), end-customer data (59 percent), citizen data (29 percent) and patient data (23 percent). The product data being collected for decision making included selling-side (62 percent), buying-side (61 percent) and MRO (40 percent).

Information management pros make data pay

For additional findings, please download the 2013 Big Data Survey Brief. This online survey was fielded in December 2012 to information management professionals. The 339 respondents were screened for involvement with their organization's data management tools and processes. The margin of error is +/-5.3 percent at 95 percent confidence level for total sample.

"Big data or not, data management will help determine which companies thrive and which ones struggle in the years to come," Wright continued. French car center network Feu Vert  is one example. With 400 retail outlets in Europe, Over six months, Feu Vert and SAS worked together to create a unique reference data hub using SAS DataFlux Data Management and SAS DataFlux Master Data Management. This project also established a customer data governance program, improved customer data value and qualification, and helped reduce the cost per customer contact. Feu Vert is improving accuracy and quality of customer data as it secures a market leadership position.

About SAS

SAS is the leader in business analytics software and services, and the largest independent vendor in the business intelligence market. Through innovative solutions, SAS helps customers at more than 70,000 sites improve performance and deliver value by making better decisions faster. Since 1976 SAS has been giving customers around the world THE POWER TO KNOW® .

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