Big Data Knows When You’re Going to Quit Your Job Before You Do

Good bosses have an uncanny ability to sense when employees are unhappy and work with them to fix problems in the office before it’s too late. At VMware in Silicon Valley, they let the machines figure it out.

VMware has been testing a new prediction technology from Workday, which makes software for human resources departments. The system delivers notifications about when employees might be getting ready to quit, and allows managers to intervene before it’s too late. It looks for trends within employee activity, when promotions were last handed out, regional factors, changes in the industry and other data to make its predictions. The recommendations can improve over time as employers train the system.

[ Full Story – by Jack Clark: Bloomberg.com – December 30, 2014 ]

Six Business Intelligence Predictions For 2015

Being a data-driven organization requires a combination of analysis and predictions. As we look at the last several years, big data has been the dominant force, moving from a consumer-based requirement to a must-have strategy for enterprises to stay competitive. This data revolution is seeing accelerated technology adoption curves and is forcing job roles to change, strategic investments in technologies like Hadoop and data quality/governance, threats to incumbent BI vendors, just to name a few. 2015 will see big changes in enterprise information management, as organizations transform every employee into being data-driven, as analytic use-cases become more complex, and as vendors try to predict the next need of the market.

[ Full Story – Forbes.com – Prakash Nanduri, December 19, 2014 ]

SMBs Win as Business Intelligence Hits the Cloud

Business intelligence from the cloud means big savings and an advantage over the competition.

Many small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) have depended on outside contractors for information technology services for several years. That’s why the cloud fits in well with a small business strategy. When the bottom line simply can’t afford large investments in internal staff or infrastructure, SMB owners can leave IT nuts and bolts to the experts.

Two recent developments are accelerating the trend of SMBs’ reliance on third-party providers. First, SMBs have become acutely aware of the potential competitive advantages of data analytics. Second, more cloud providers now offer business intelligence (BI) as part of their overall Software as a Service bundle, making the cloud even more attractive and cost-effective for SMBs. AMI-Partners’ most recent Global Market Forecast Model predicts that cloud-based BI and analytics options adopted by SMBs will continue to grow by 20 percent through 2015.

[ Full Story – BizTechMagazine.com: Jill Billhorn – November 21, 2014 ]

Gartner Says Advanced Analytics Is a Top Business Priority

Gartner, Inc. today said advanced analytics is a top business priority, fuelled by the need to make advanced analysis accessible to more users and broaden the insight into the business. Advanced analytics is the fastest-growing segment of the business intelligence (BI) and analytics software market and surpassed $1 billion in 2013.

“While advanced analytics have existed for over 20 years, big data has accelerated interest in the market and its position in the business,” said Alexander Linden, research director at Gartner. “Rather than being the domain of a few select groups (for example, marketing, risk), many more business functions now have a legitimate interest in this capability to help foster better decision making and improved business outcomes.”

[ Full Story – Gartner – October 21, 2014 ]

Zoomdata Scores $17M To Help Update the Business Intelligence Market

Business Intelligence is a highly mature market that’s been altered once before, but new-comer Zoomdata wants to disrupt the space one more time –and they got $17M in Series B funding today to continue their quest.

The round is led by by Accel Partners with help from NEA, Columbus Nova Technology Partners, Razor’s Edge Ventures and B7. It follows their Series A round of $4.1M in July 2013 and brings the total funds raised to $22.2M to date.

Justin Langseth, founder and CEO of Zoomdata says his BI competitors such as Tableau and Qlik  were born in the world of SQL and data warehouses. He believes today’s data analytics need a more modern approach. His company was built to process today’s platforms like Hadoop, Spark and NoSQL and he says unlike his competitors, they were built from the ground up to do it.

[ Full Story – www.techcrunch.com: Ron Miller – October 6,2014 ]

Is Excel the Next Killer BI App?

Love it or hate it, export to Excel is still the most specified requirement in contemporary analytic tool selections, despite all the advances in business intelligence (BI) technologies. Excel is comfortable, flexible and with the new Microsoft Office 365 Excel Power BI add-ins (Power Query, Power Pivot, and Power Map), it’s growing to become exponentially more powerful—pun intended. With the latest Microsoft strategy shift of embedding self-service BI applications right within Excel, could Microsoft’s Excel Power BI release become a BI “killer app?”

[ Full Story – sqlmag.com: Jen Underwood – June 17, 2014 ]

Scientists Question the Big Price Tags of Big Data

Big data is big business in the life sciences, attracting lots of money and prestige. It’s also relatively young; the move toward big data can be traced back to 1990, when researchers joined together to sequence all three billion letters in the human genome. That project was completed in 2003 and since then, the life sciences have become a data juggernaut, propelled forward by sequencing and imaging technologies that accumulate data at astonishing speeds.

The National Ecological Observatory Network, funded by Congress with $434m, will equip 106 sites in the United States with sensors to gather ecological data all day, every day, for 30 years when it starts operating in three years. The Human Brain Project, supported by $1.6 billion from the European Union, intends to create a supercomputer simulation of a working human brain, including all 86 billion neurons and 100 trillion synapses. The International Cancer Genome Consortium, 74 research teams across 17 countries spending an estimated $1 billion, is compiling 25,000 tumour genome sequences from 50 types of cancers.

But not all scientists think bigger is better. More than 450 researchers have already signed a public letter criticising the Human Brain Project, citing a “significant risk” that the project will fail to meet its goal. One neuroscientist called the project “a waste of money”, while another bluntly said the idea of simulating the human brain is downright “crazy”. Other big data ­projects have also been criticised, especially for cost and lack of results.

[ Full Story – Newsweek – July 24, 2014 ]

You may not need Big Data after all | #MITIQ

The business buzzword over the past two years has been “Big Data”. Companies are trying to figure our how they can leverage their collected data and translate it into a competitive advantage. However, according to the Director of MIT’s Sloan School Center for Information Systems Research, Jeanne Ross, this approach is not necessarily a one-size-fits-all for today’s organizations.

Ross, co-author of the article ‘You May Not Need Big Data After All’, cautions businesses against buying into the hype around Big Data.

“I think you grow into Big Data,” Ross notes. She explains that there are companies who find the competitive advantage works within their specific industries. As an example, she notes that the oil and gas industry has long employed Big Data for helping them to decide when and where they should place a billion dollar well. The success in one industry, however, doesn’t necessarily translate into success in others. “Many times we know great things about our customers. We just haven’t figured out a way to address them.”

When asked if the fear is misplaced that some companies feel in that they can’t address the Big Data they have, Ross states, “No, not misplaced at all. If you don’t think you can do it, you probably can’t.” For organizations recognizing the potential value of Big Data for the first time, this news could be disheartening.

[ Full Story – siliconAngle – July 23, 2014 ]

Big Data May Not Be All It’s Cut Out to Be

The National Ecological Observatory Network, funded by Congress for $434 million, will equip 106 U.S. sites with sensors to gather ecological data all day, every day, for 30 years after it goes operational in 2017. The Human Brain Project, supported by $1.6 billion from the European Union, intends to create a supercomputer simulation of a working human brain, including all 86 billion neurons and 100 trillion synapses. The International Cancer Genome Consortium, 74 research teams across 17 countries spending an estimated $1 billion, is compiling 25,000 tumor genome sequences from 50 types of cancers.

Big data is big business in the life sciences, attracting lots of money and prestige. It’s relatively young; the move toward big data can be traced back to 1990, when researchers joined together to sequence all 3 billion letters in the human genome. That project concluded in 2003, and since then, the life sciences have become a data juggernaut, propelled forward by new sequencing and imaging technologies that accumulate data at astonishing speeds.

But not all scientists think bigger is better. As of July 9, 2014, for example, more than 450 researchers had signed a public letter criticizing the Human Brain Project, citing a “significant risk” that the project will fail to meet its goal. One neuroscientist called the project “a waste of money,” while another bluntly said the idea of simulating the human brain is downright “crazy.” Other big data projects have also been criticized, especially for cost and lack of results.

[ Full Story – Newsweek – July 24, 2014 ]

Forget Big Data, Business Leaders Still Go With Their Gut, Study Says

Do you ever worry that robots will one day run our major corporations, making dispassionate decisions based strictly on big data and cold statistical analyses? Or maybe some of us think that time has already come?

Fear not, says a new study that looks at the roles of gut reaction, respect, trust and other emotions in high-level business decisions. They’re way more important, and perhaps underestimated, than previously believed.

The research, dubbed “Only Human: The Emotional Logic of Business Decisions,” comes from Time Inc.’s Fortune Knowledge Group and global advertising agency gyro. It found that there are human faces and sensitivities behind those c-suite mandates. Business is, in fact, personal.

[ Full Story – Mashable – July 16, 2014 ]