Potential of Big Data Essay

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Summary 3-10: Seizing the potential of ‘big data’ In an effort to gain or maintain a competitive advantage, many companies are beginning to hone in on large-scale data gathering and analytics. While the focus has been on companies such as Google and Amazon, other companies in industries such as retail, pharmaceuticals, and insurance have made progress with big data strategies. Based on the experiences these various companies have had, McKinsey & Company highlights four principles that can help executives in their effort to capture the potential of big data. 1. Size the opportunities and threats * Many big data strategies arise when executives feel that their company needs to respond to a threat or see an opportunity to attack and disrupt an industry’s value pool. 2. Identify big data resources…and gaps * Executives must frame the basics of their big data strategy in order to determine what kinds of information and capabilities are required. * Need to review all internal and external data i.e. audit * Audit will provide leadership with a realistic view of the company’s capabilities and needs. Can lead to finding “data gems” which are pieces of information that could be held inside their business units. 3. Align on strategic choices * After companies identify the opportunity and identify the resources, they must take time to PLAN their data strategy. * All too often, data strategies are intertwined and dependent on other strategic pieces of a company. Company’s need to be cognizant of this and plan effectively to reach desired results. 4. Understand the organizational implications * The threats and opportunities associated with big data will have organizational implications * For big data to be useful, the data itself must cut across internal boundaries – this is against the grain of an organization

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