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October 5, 2016 No Comments

Featured article by Dean Yao, Jinfonet Software

Recently, Jinfonet Software sought to discover what was on the minds of businesses as it relates to users of analytics both inside and outside the enterprise.

For quite some time, the majority of enterprise business intelligence (BI) investments and implementations have focused on internal processes and users. However, when Jinfonet surveyed more than 400 senior IT and business professionals about their BI and analytics practices, 67 percent said they were serving external customers. Yet a large percentage of external customers still don’t have access to the analytics they need, because the cost to deploy them stands in the way.

Forty-eight percent of respondents indicated that most of their commercial customers would benefit from analytic insights, but only 26 percent were getting them, suggesting that enterprises have an opportunity to improve products and services with analytics. The two greatest impediments to deploying BI and analytics to users were cost of deployment and choosing the right type of product.

In terms of delivering new or improved metrics and analytical insights to external customers, respondents said the most effective solutions were purpose-specific set of visualizations and analytics embedded within products, websites or applications (56 percent), followed by a dedicated web-based portal for analyzing and exploring data (45 percent).

The areas within an enterprise that could benefit the most from BI and analytics investment over the next 12 months are customer service and analysis (23 percent), commercial service operations (17 percent) and competitive market analysis (16 percent). The top drivers for making these investments are to improve output, quality and performance (41 percent), improve product and service offerings (33 percent) and reduce costs and increase profits (29 percent).

The survey results also suggested an increase in cloud-based analytics investments. When asked if they were building any new software applications to deliver new analytical insights and improve the overall application experience, 34 percent said “yes on premises,” followed by 32 percent that said, “yes, on a public, private or hybrid cloud.” Twenty-six percent of respondents said they are currently migrating existing databases, reporting or analytics applications to a cloud. If an enterprise had BI and analytics in a cloud or was planning to migrate components there, the main driver was to reduce IT operations cost.

Most companies have a dedicated team (staff or outsourced) of developers for reporting and analytics in their organization (42 percent said yes, they are a part of the IT). Despite this, teams are missing key development skills needed to close the gap uncovered in survey results; the top two skills teams lacked were reporting and dashboard development and data visualization.

What was ultimately discovered via this survey was that the gap between supply and demand of analytical insights for customers presents a huge opportunity for companies. The results demonstrate that product and service owners are aware of the need to enhance offerings with data analytics and insights, but are still struggling to deliver them – a challenge that we can overcome through embedded analytics.

Dean Yao brings over 10 years of experience in software marketing and product management. Prior to working at Jinfonet Software, Dean was a senior product manager at cloud computing startup Nimbula (acquired by Oracle), where he focused on technical best practices, competitive marketing, and product strategy.

 

DATA and ANALYTICS , SECURITY, SOCIAL BUSINESS

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