This article first appeared in the Autumn 2017 issue of The Record.
Organisations are becoming more data-driven as they realise how important analytics can be for gaining business insights and making smarter decisions faster than their competitors. However, without a best practice approach to analytics, it is easy to become mired in complexity.
Within any company, different groups of people need access to data and analytics – from business users and analysts, to data scientists – so large monolithic data analysis tools are no longer adequate. To drive real value from data, businesses need unified solutions that enable collaboration and provide fast, simple access to information.
The challenge is no longer collecting or accessing raw data, but aggregating and analysing it to provide insights that can deliver measurable improvements. The right solution can unleash the potential of data, without requiring the organisation to have deep data expertise.
Cloud-based solutions offer the biggest benefits when it comes to avoiding the high expenses associated with data collection and analysis. The cloud lets organisations handle a diverse range of data sources at scale, making it more cost effective and less risky. Plus, companies can scale up their flexible cloud solutions so they can access the computational power for data analysis projects, without investing in on-premise infrastructure that may not be needed in future.
Ideally, companies should have a highly scalable, near-real-time analytical platform that offers an agile architecture, metrics for industry best practices, built-in real-time intelligence, and customisable dashboards to increase user adoption.
One of the biggest barriers to success is users being unable to get the information they need without being a data expert. Users need a ¬self-service environment that helps them answer the right questions at the right time, not a series of complex, hard-to-manage, specialist tools. For example, users must be able to rapidly access business and non-relational data in real time without building complex data cubes. Businesses also need a solution that will deliver results quickly, and includes pre-built dashboards and best practices as standard.
DXC Eclipse has built Exceed Analytics, a solution based on Microsoft’s Power BI technology that allows employees to access data of any size and type in near real time. It’s the ideal tool for helping businesses to achieve best practice data analytics without over-committing valuable resources.
With the right solution and a best practice approach to analytics, companies can use data to quickly make better decisions, benefitting both their customers and their business.
Paul Timmins is global director for Microsoft at DXC Technology
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