Business analytics (BA) can be defined as the effort of using software, processes and technologies to analyze and gain insight into business performance. Moving forward, if you aren’t taking advantage of analytics to provide operational insights, implementing should be at the top of your agenda.
Analytics is becoming increasingly important as businesses, government agencies and non-profits discover that the intelligence available through these efforts can significantly improve operational outcomes. In order for BA to be effective, there must be a commitment to adopt it as a key component of the enterprise.
There was a case study recently brought to our attention that a hospital administration wanted to reduce the time necessary to perform an angioplasty on a heart attack patient. The average was 143 minutes and their desire was to reduce the time to 90 minutes or less. They were tracking clinical outcomes but were missing four key metrics.
- How long did it take the patient to get an EKG once they came in the door?
- How long did it take the patient to get to the catheterization lab once they came in the door?
- How long did it take for the lab to get the patient’s EKG results, and
- How long did it take to complete the PTCA once the EKG results were in hand?
Once they took steps to capture these four measurements and they had a history to review, they were able to address the performance gaps to meet their goal.
IBM Agrees to Acquire Weather Channel’s Digital Assets
Technology firms are lining up to acquire or build data repositories they can leverage to equip them to compete more effectively. IBM recently acquired the Weather Channel’s digital assets which daily handles 65 billion unique transactions on weather data.
It’s their bet that this data collection engine will give them the ability to add new high volume data streams alongside their weather data to provide them with additional metrics to uncover hidden correlations on any given business activity.
Many public sector agencies collect vast amounts of data. However, some have a vision that the data they collect can be used to improve service quality. The Arkansas Department of Education is an example of one such agency that has chosen to use their information as a flashlight to identify student performance in real time. Now they have the ability to know, in the current semester, if a student needs additional help and they can immediately take steps to tailor an individual approach for that student.
Bringing It Home
As your business grows, analytics can play an increasingly important role in improving the quality of your services. It all starts with a desire to improve, identifying your challenges and defining your goals.
Since we are recording, collecting and counting just about everything related to the business, we have a rich repository of information to draw from. This information (whether structured or unstructured) can offer insights into how we can distinguish ourselves from the competition. Analytics is the vehicle that turns big data into a resource of practical insights for improvement.
Tapping into the power of your data goes beyond an IT improvement exercise. It requires a fundamental change between the business and technology so that the IT group becomes an information provider and a source for presenting the data in a manner that fosters data-driven decisions.
If you would like to discuss how Mainstream Technologies can help you get the most out of your big data, give us a call at 501.801.6700 or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.