IBM Global Business Services
– which admittedly means many things to many people – isno longer confned to the realm o technology. Today it is a business imperative. Inaddition to providing solutions to long-standing business challenges, big data inspiresnew ways to transorm processes, organizations, entire industries and even society itsel. Yet extensive media coverage and diverse opinions make it easy to perceive that big data is only or “big” organizations – what is really happening? Our newest research fnds that midsize organizations are just as likely to be using big datatechnologies to tap into existing data sources and get closer to their customers as any other company.
By Susan Miele and Rebecca Shockley
In industries throughout the world, executives are recognizingthe opportunities associated with big data. But despite what seems like unrelenting media attention on uses o big data, it can be hard to fnd in-depth inormation on what midsizeorganizations are really doing. So, we sought to betterunderstand how such organizations view big data – and to what extent they are currently using it to beneft their businesses. The IBM Institute or Business Value partnered with the SaïdBusiness School at the University o Oxord to conduct the2012 Big Data @ Work Study, surveying 1144 business and ITproessionals in 95 countries, including 555 “midmarket”businesses – those with annual revenues less than US$1 billion,82 percent o which reported revenue o less than US$500million. These survey results were combined with interviews o more than two dozen academics, subject matter experts andbusiness/IT executives, and an examination o dozens o IBMclient studies, to develop this report. More than hal o thesemidmarket respondents were rom business unctions, such as Marketing and Finance, in companies that spanned 12 macroindustry groups, and hailed rom around the globe with 37percent rom North America and 38 percent rom Europe. A deeper examination o their responses ound that midmarket companies were just as likely as large enterprises to beexploring big data eorts – creating business-driven strategiesand blueprints to move orward – and a quarter o themalready have big data pilots or an implementation underway. The volume o data may be smaller, but the technologies,analysis techniques and business value they are deriving are onpar with their large enterprise counterparts. Big data, weound, is not just or “big” organizations; smaller organizationscan apply the same principles to extract untapped value romdata sources both within and outside their organizations.