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6 analytics trends that will shape business in 2016

Thor Olavsrud | Jan. 26, 2016
Deloitte identifies six major trends and market disruptions that will drive C-suite technology investments in 2016.

"It's difficult to think of an industry that can't be transformed or improved by the IoT," Deloitte notes in the report. "While considerable effort remains to develop IoT standards and link up sensor-based data, there are already many possible applications that can provide value today — including helping people improve fitness, enhance efficiency and save money."

5. The triumph of the scientists

With data now potentially affecting every area of business, Lucker says scientists are taking on a new stature in the business world. It should be noted that analytics aren't new; businesses have used analytics for decades. But recent advances in technology and data capabilities have given scientists and the sciences a new importance in the business world.

"Business isn't the only field notable for major advances in analytics through the years," the report says. "If anything, there may be a stronger case for the sciences leading the vanguard of analytics. Universities, research labs and other science-focused organizations have been applying and refining analytics approaches to solve some incredibly complex problems through the years, in everything from molecular biology and astrophysics to the social sciences and beyond. In many cases, they don't even use the word "analytics." For them, it's all just science."

But the current environment is bringing those scientists out of the research lab and into the enterprise, especially since tools developed for science are paying dividends in business. For instance, tools designed to help DNA researchers unlock the human genome can also help organizations unlock the insights buried in tens of thousands of emails.

"There are concepts and algorithms and techniques that have been designed in the hard sciences that are being adapted for business applications in very powerful and unique ways," Lucker says. "Text analytics is leveraging gene sequencing analytics to quickly recognize patterns in text. It's providing a whole new suite of algorithmic methods and analytics approaches.

6. The rise of the insight-driven organization

For the past several years, Deloitte and others watching this trend have referred to the "data-driven enterprise," which relies on data to drive its decision-making. Over the past year, Lucker says, we've seen organizations move from implementing or improving targeted analytics capabilities in just a few key areas to taking steps to leveraging data across the entire organization. Deloitte calls organizations that take this additional step insight-driven organizations (IDOs).

The IDO goes beyond the selective use of insights to fuel decision-making in individual parts of the business, the report says. It deploys a tightly knitted combination of strategy, people, processes and data — along with technology — to deliver insights at the point of action, every day, in every part of the organization. One example might be marrying up human resources data with production information and marketing data to determine how employees are performing across the sales side of things.

"It's bringing all the data with the organization together to create enterprise-wide views," Lucker says.


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