2013 was the year of experimentation with Big Data initiatives. Companies invested in pilots, proof of concepts and new ideas – some succeeded, some failed. That is what happens when a new concept comes to market but it is those companies who learned from the successful and not-so-successful pilots that will start to show financial benefits as a result.

The positive return of Big Data investments:

Real-Time Analytics

The term Big Data will fade way to Analytics. It is not about collecting data and subsequently delivering insights and eventually, actions. You have to capture, analyse and act in real time to stay competitive – If you don’t, your competitor will. The key for every company is to drive to be proactive and not reactive. Your ability to change prices, change a marketing campaign on the fly and to revaluate your business strategy learning from success and errors will be the key to success for data-driven organisations in the next year.

C-Level Calls For Chief Data Officer

A CDO does not own the data, he or she is the caretaker of the data and, importantly an agent of change in helping to establish a data driven culture inside the organisation. From here they are accountable for data strategy, bringing a data management view on how a company can make money using its data assets. The importance of this role is coming to light and in 2014 will be part of the discussions among C-Level and the board of directors.

The Year Of The Wearable Computer

The growth of wearable technology such as Fistbit and Nike devices, along with Google Glasses will be part of our daily lives and therefore revolutionise how we interact with and create data – mobile is no longer just smartphones and tablets. This will influence marketing campaigns for retailers, health care providers and consumer goods companies and require a new set of infrastructure to deal with the huge amount of data that will be collected, analysed and acted upon.

Data Quality Is Key To Success

Data quality is a programme not a project. This means that more and more companies that are serious about data usage, need to look into enterprise data quality initiatives. If your data is not reliable and if your stakeholders don’t trust it, no matter what you do in prescriptive or predictive analytics it will not be able to deliver results. Businesses in 2014 need to realise even more than they do now, that data quality is a money maker that will continuously invest in data quality programs to succeed.