Big data, big data, big data.
We all know the term, understand its significance and have seen plenty of examples across the industry of how businesses are utilizing massive amounts of data (and the applied analytics needed to make sense of it all) as a competitive edge in the market.
But what if the way companies are going about big data and analytics is all wrong?
Joe DeCosmo, Chief Analytics Officer of Enova Decisions, says that it’s clear that even with access to big data, not harnessing it in the most efficient way can lead to some major challenges in driving innovation.
In order to truly reap all the benefits of big data, while also keeping up with consumer demands and staying one step ahead of the competition, DeCosmo says the integration of real-time, scalable analytics decisions must be made.
Unfortunately, DeCosmo said, in many cases the lack of analytics expertise or an advanced technical infrastructure stand in the way of delivering instant answers to the tech-centric consumers who demand them.
BYPASSING THE REAL-TIME ROADBLOCKS
Real-time decisions come with many benefits – with enhanced customer experience and improved business functions among them – but getting there isn’t easy.
“As the speed of business steadily increases and automated processes and faster decisions change the game, more and more businesses will feel the crunch to make real-time, automated decisions a reality,” DeCosmo explained.
A key challenge in reaching real-time decisions is actually finding the analytics expertise needed to develop and monitor the necessary models and algorithms.
Basically, a good big data and analytics architect is hard to find.
With data scientists being one of the hardest analytics resources to recruit, DeCosmo noted that many businesses attempt to develop and implement advanced technical infrastructures internally.
However, it doesn’t take long for the complexities and enormous financial costs of taking the in-house path to become overwhelming.
DeCosmo pointed out that building the platforms needed to enable real-time decision-making with big data takes a significant amount of resources, adding that “it takes millions of dollars and multiple years to build a world-class technical infrastructure that produces real-time automated decisions — even with top-notch analytics experts at the ready.”
As the demand for analytics talent continues to grow (and the supply remains scarce), DeCosmo provides some important considerations businesses should keep in mind if they decide to cultivate analytics expertise in-house, such as understanding the right mix of talent to address the data challenge, dedicating to a strategy for expanding the search and understanding exactly what type of talent is needed.
But when access to the analytics expertise of data scientists isn’t there, businesses face a fork in the road.
TO BUY OR TO BUILD?
Here’s the dilemma: Should a business purchase or create its own real-time predictive analytics power?
The answer may actually fall somewhere in the middle – a combination of both buying and building.
Though analytics expertise and technical infrastructures are both significant, DeCosmo said it makes sense to build one and buy the other.
“Hire a small team of analytics experts that can build their own algorithms and work closely with the business units to determine their needs,” he explained. “Then, take advantage of existing technical infrastructures that have already been built and refined to run models and produce real-time results.”
In an effort to help businesses attain a scalable predictive analytics solution that meets their needs for real-time decisions, Enova Decisions created its Real-Time Analytics and Colossus Decisioning Platform.
The platform enables customizable, real-time scoring and evaluates thousands of transactions per hour in order to produce scores and decisions on fraud, credit, operations, and marketing in an instant and at scale via Web-based APIs.
“Businesses that outsource or supplement existing resources with analytics expertise, customized modeling, and a technical infrastructure, save time and capital versus building all solutions in-house,” DeCosmo explained. “Innovation through analytics drives business performance, growth, customer satisfaction and bottom-line results.”
For more details on the influence of real-time decision-making, please see “The Big Data Game Changer,” a white paper authored by Joe DeCosmo.