As we enter 2013, businesses have more choices than ever for technology to improve business and IT. The proper use of technology enables businesses to be more efficient. Five key technologies that are identified to give organizations significant competitive advantages are big data, business analytics, business and social collaboration, cloud computing and mobile technology.
Big data helps business and IT organizations manage and use information. Only 14 percent of businesses today are satisfied with their existing big data technology. At the same time, organizations that utilize big data effectively have improved their business significantly, according to 28 percent of organizations.
Of course, big data can have significant business value, but using it requires that IT coordinate with business on the benefits they can achieve.
In order to optimize business activities, more and more organizations are investing in information assets that require big data and the analytics associated with it.
Also, the main issue when starting with big data is being too expensive, as found in almost half (44%) of organizations. At the same time, organizations need to ensure they have the competencies to meet big data needs, which include not just the technology for storage and access but also underlying information management issues such as data governance, data integration and data quality.
Business analytics is very important to more than half (52%) of organizations. Business analytics is not just a technology to get metrics faster. It is a set of processes to operate smarter with information, to better visualize and apply advanced methods such as predictive analytics.
More than half of organizations say analytics are too hard to build and maintain or data is not readily available. The most time-consuming aspects of the process are data-related ones, according to 44 percent of organizations. The technology too still has room to improve, with only 20 percent being very satisfied.
Something what we have to notice is that use of mobile technologies such as tablets is growing across organizations. Use of social collaboration technology with business analytics enables team work on making improvements in shorter period of time than traditional email or phone calls.
Business and Social Collaboration
The revolution in social media has expanded into business, and that's a fact. With this trend, we notice that social collaboration and helping business processes by connecting people to achieve goals personally, is becoming trend as well. With only a quarter of organizations being satisfied with their existing approaches, we see a lot of changes coming in 2013 in this area.
Collaboration is critical in areas of human capital management, sales, customer engagement and even finance. Using social collaboration with business analytics is a growing priority and organizations will need to assess their technologies to see if they meet this need.
We believe that social collaboration will help bridge generational divides between workers as it becomes more easily accessible through web and mobile technologies. Also, it allows managers and workers to engage anytime or anyplace. Focusing on the benefits of social collaboration, such as knowledge sharing, will be very important in the future.
Businesses don’t see cloud computing as innovative technology but rather as a utility and becoming a standard method that can be easily accessed and leveraged as part of their portfolio of computing options. These faster methods to onboard applications have become easy and in most cases require little IT involvement.
But beyond the simplicity for business and potential chaos for IT to eventually govern and support, the cloud computing environment is now a viable platform for IT to leverage in a multitude of methods, from IT infrastructure to developing and operating applications.
The cloud computing environment can be used as a central point for integrating data and storing it for the enterprise or for customers and suppliers. Problem can occur because organizations have not automated the integration of data to support business processes or business analytics and decision support.
Companies should explore resources in the company to determine if necessary skill sets exist. Part of this process is ability to know whether the technology can adapt to the workers’ needs and capabilities, and whether it requires a training. Companies should also look to the future and examine how to use cloud computing to rent technology, and how to use mobile technology to enhance collaboration.