Strategy and application are both key with big data

Anyone who spends time sifting through industry publications – regarding just about any major sector – can't go too long without stumbling upon some content regarding big data. The intensity of the laser-focused attention on big data has reached a fever pitch in the past year or two, and it's enough to give people whiplash or fatigue. Some might begin to think that big data and business intelligence solutions aren't worth it simply based on being sick of hearing about it. 

That isn't a point of view modern businesses can afford to have. Despite the aura of over-hype that surrounds BI software and big data, they're definitely essential to modern business. The key is, as recent industry experts have pointed out, to focus on it in the right way and not become sidetracked by any of the noise that is tangential to the trend

Don't just dive in – a strategy is necessary
Network World reported that Nate Silver – a statistician and New York Times blogger who became renowned for predicting the specific results of the 2012 presidential election – recently spoke out on his perspective regarding big data. He made it clear in the interview that company leaders couldn't simply jump into the use of big data and expect it to immediately facilitate positive results. Devising a strategy and using the best tools for analytics would be essential.

"None of this big data stuff is going to be a solution for companies who have poor corporate cultures where you have trouble communicating ideas, where you don't have everyone on the same page," Silver said, according to the news source. He continued by emphasizing quality in data: "It's not like you can wave a magic wand and have some formula that uncovers all the secrets in the world, it's more like if you can strip away the noise, you'll have some understanding of what's really there."

Invest in the future rather than current trends
The issue of over-hype is what leads to another potential pitfall of a poorly-thought-out big data use strategy. As Forrester points out in a recent blog post, companies considered to be "high-growth" are investing heavily in software and technologies expected to have considerable potential. These enterprises were 53 percent more likely to be making such investments than those that were not growing as well. 

The source explains that reductions in cost and upticks in flexibility and agility are the real long-term benefits of proper BI and data use. With that in mind, those are the factors that should be considered when choosing the best business intelligence software.

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