Three-quarters of Australian organisations currently use Big Data analytics in order to derive benefits ranging from better decision making to greater profitability, according to a new study by research company, Fifth Quadrant.
It claimed that businesses are overwhelmingly positive about the benefits of Big Data analytics, with nine out of ten organisations believing it can help support business decision making and offer a better customer experience.
In addition, 80 per cent of the respondents agreed that Big Data analytics helps increase profit or revenue, supports innovation and helps drive competitive advantage.
However, in the report, Big Data or Big Hype? , it found that 53 per cent of businesses surveyed said their attempts to leverage Big Data for a better customer experience have not been successful.
Only 31 per cent said they actively use Big Data and analytics when forming strategic decisions or across a wide range of corporate activities, less than 30 per cent consider Big Data a core business initiative and just a quarter use it to determine the success of a product or project.
Fifth Quadrant head of customer experience research, Chris Kirby, said Big Data analytics are being used by organisations to drive a range of positive performance outcomes but this study also shows work still needs to be done to leverage the analytics for greatest advantage.
"Australian businesses are in little doubt about the potential value that Big Data analytics can deliver, especially when it comes to developing a better understanding of customer needs.
"The greatest success appears to come when organisations adopt an integrated customer analytics strategy that puts quality data in the hands of decision makers," he said.
The study also identified a correlation between the maturity of an organisation's Big Data analytics practices and business performance outcomes, particularly in the areas of customer experience performance, revenue generation, employee engagement and operational efficiency. It stated that businesses that score highly in maturity are consistently more advanced in using analytics to determine return on investment (ROI) and to more effectively manage resources. Other findings of the study include:
- The biggest users of Big Data analytics are customer service, sales and marketing, while the least prolific user is the human resources department.
- There is a growing practice of integrating both external and internal customer data among mature organisations.
- Across all organisations, analytics are most commonly used in forecasting, improving the customer experience, marketing and real time decision-making.
- The major challenges cited by less mature organisations are: a lack of skills, the lack of an appropriate technology solution, poorly integrated IT systems, lack of internal resources to manage change, and the fact that other initiatives have higher priorities.