When it comes to achieving strategic business goals, data, analytics, and AI (artificial intelligence) are playing increasingly important and prominent roles. According to Fortune Business Insights, the global market for big data analytics will be worth nearly $550 billion by 2028, up from about $231 billion in 2021. Driving adoption of analytics tools, per the Fortune Business Insights report, is the trend toward digitalization thanks to pressures put on businesses by the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as the increasing use of edge computing, among other factors.
A new study from WNS and Forrester suggests the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has shown just how valuable data and analytics systems can be for organizations that need to stay agile. The research includes insights from 450 senior business decisionmakers across industries and in multiple countries, including the U.S. Respondents representing organizations with higher data and analytics maturity levels reported quantifiable ROI (return on investment), WNS says. In fact, 82% of respondents representing organizations with an advanced maturity level say their organizations have experienced positive year-on-year growth during the past three years.
Further, of those reporting advanced data and analytics maturity, 54% said they achieved increased revenue, while 44% reported having gained competitive advantage against their competitors. Of the various sectors included in the survey, the report demonstrates the banking and financial services and insurance industries reported the greatest benefits and cost savings from high maturity levels in their data analytics practices.
Key to success in leveraging data and analytics, WNS’s report says, is deploying the right sets of technologies. When asked what investments organizations have planned to support data management, governance, and analytics, 36% said they’re planning to invest in the data pipeline, while 35% said they’re planning to invest in data fabric or virtualization tools. In the AI realm, 72% plan to invest in AI-enhanced business intelligence platforms, 67% in text analytics, and 66% in speech analytics.
The maturity of technology around data management was the top ranked challenge facing executives trying to execute on their organizations’ data and analytics vision, with 58% identifying this as an issue. Additional challenges include the inability to process big data and act on it at the necessary speeds (54%), issues with data stewardship and governance (45%), legal and compliance issues (33%), lack of a budget (33%), data silos (32%), and a lack of required technology skills (30%).
What’s more, there seems to be a gap between leaders’ recognition that data and analytics are key strategic enablers and their prioritization of data and analytics. For instance, WNS says that 63% of respondents identified data and analytics as “key strategic enablers”, but far fewer—37%—say they’re prioritizing investment in improving their data and analytics capabilities.
The discrepancy indicates there is ample opportunity for the market to flourish as more organizations bump up their investment—essentially putting their money where their mouths are. And while organizations that are at the beginning stages of adoption face the hurdle of developing an initial strategy for data and analytics, the data suggests the return for investment really is worth the effort—and this is true across sectors.
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