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In recognition of IT’s increasingly large impact on business, Accenture Technology Labs is augmenting its annual Accenture Technology Vision with a series of Business Implication companion pieces. The Accenture Technology Vision sets out to determine the emerging IT developments that will have the greatest impact on enterprises, government agencies and other organizations in the next three to five years.
In this first in the series of Business Implications, Accenture Technology Labs looks at the significance of emerging data culture.
Read the Accenture Technology Vision 2012.
Google, Facebook and Amazon already run on data—lots of it, from outside their respective four walls as well as inside. They sift the data in ways that deliver rich insights and lead to faster, more assured decision making.
But how is this different from a decade or two ago, when companies began investing in business intelligence solutions? Facebook’s recent public offering gives a clue: its valuation owed much to its storehouse of consumer data. The broader answer: we’re entering an age in which data drives every decision. Data has become a strategic asset, and a company’s success will depend on how well and how often its employees, at every level, use that asset.
Businesses have been recognizing data as a valuable asset for decades—but what has changed is the associated cost. Whereas data was once very expensive to access, report on, analyze, process and store, IT has begun to change the cost equation.
CIOs can now design data platforms that let their organizations tap structured and unstructured data—everything from blog posts and Facebook data to e-mail traffic—and to industrialize their data services (see Accenture’s Technology Vision 2012 report) so that companies can quickly access and share data across the organization, at minimal incremental cost.
Changing the cost model is only the beginning. Companies also need to move to a model in which all employees are expected to maximize data usage to drive business benefits—a cultural shift that could affect how the company is run. In the new model, data becomes central to innovation and to all decision making, fueling growth and making the organization’s operations more efficient at every level.
Established organizations do not become data-centric overnight: it must be recognized that this is a journey. Accenture Technology believes that three factors cry out for immediate attention:
Reskill the organization. Companies need to build the skills necessary to use data effectively.
Appoint a data champion. The more that data is shared within and outside of the organization, the more there is a case to be made for a chief data officer position.
Rethink relationships with partner organizations. Accenture believes that companies must rethink their partnership agreements in relation to data, reevaluating current arrangements in light of the value of the data already being shared.
Contact Accenture to learn how we can help your organization begin the journey toward data-centricity.
May 16, 2012
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