In business, there can be chasms between promise and fulfillment. Consider the case of big data analytics. Companies of all sizes are investing in technology to assemble unprecedented amounts of data, from customer call-centre recordings and product inventories to employee sick days and weather statistics. This goldmine of information, when properly analysed, can solve existing problems and reveal new opportunities.
Yet many organisations are not reaping the rewards of their massive data collection efforts, according to an Ernst & Young study. Integrating big data technologies into existing IT infrastructures, security concerns and a shortage of technical talent are common challenges. A greater problem, though, is the lack of business leaders who grasp big data analytics well enough to guide their companies in applying it to generate strategic advantage.