By Steve Mills
IBM’s Senior Vice President & Group Executive, Software & Systems
On a smarter planet, there’s a convergence of market forces and technology advances that is widening the gap between those who embrace analytics to gain insight and those who are flying blind.
In today’s data-intensive world, we are witnessing some major shifts that require organizations around the globe to adjust and evolve their business and information systems strategies to both meet these changing external forces while capitalizing on the new opportunities these changes present.
Moving Beyond Information Overload
First, information in our world is exploding. There are expected to be 1 trillion new devices connected to the Internet in the near future, which will help drive 44X digital data growth by the year 2020, 80 percent of which will be unstructured content and will require great effort to analyze.
Second, the pace of change in business is outpacing our collective ability to keep up with that change. Sixty percent of CEOs in our IBM CEO Study this year agreed that they have more data than they can use effectively, and yet 4 out of 5 business leaders tell us they see information as a vital source of competitive advantage!
Third, and most notably, the performance gap between leaders and laggards/followers is widening: Those organizations that apply advanced analytics successfully have 33 percent more revenue growth and 12X more profit growth than those who don’t. Top performing enterprises use analytics 5X more than lower performing ones.
Adjustments to meet these changing business conditions require vigilance, determination, and the cultivation of new skills and capabilities. Successful organizations are increasingly successful because they take a structured approach to turning insight into action using business analytics and optimization.
Turning Information Into Insight
Success in business optimization requires aligning an organization’s information strategy to its business strategy and determining specific business outcomes. It includes the application of technology, a partnership between business and IT, investment in skills, and a lasting commitment to strategic and cultural change that creates pervasive, fact-based decision making.
That sounds like a mouthful, and it is. So how, you ask, can I get started?
No question, learning to use business optimization to turn insights into action takes time and effort, which is why I’m pleased that this week marks the sixth year IBM will host the IBM Information on Demand and Business Analytics Forum (IOD11). The conference brings together the world’s leading experts in information management — from IBM, our Business Partners, analysts, as well as over 300 client speakers — to share the insights and lessons they’ve gained on the road to successful business optimization.
The five-day event will feature over 10,000 attendees, and will highlight hardware, software, and services solutions from across the IBM portfolio. It will also include more than 700 technical sessions across several key tracks, 110 hands on labs, and IBM’s largest technology EXPO, featuring Watson and the Smarter Computing Zone.
Capitalizing on analytics to explore big data represents an immense opportunity. In recent years, IBM pioneered the 3 “V’s” of big data — volume, variety, and velocity. But at IOD 2011 we’re going to introduce the 4th V, “veracity.”
Because big data is not only about “lots of data,” but increasingly requires the skill to discern information from noise, trends from incomplete data, and all by looking at multiple facets of the data.
At the end of the day, or hopefully, at least by the end of IOD 2011, it is our express hope that we will have shared with you IBM’s deep industry and domain expertise, along with our proven industry-based approaches and best practices, that help you and your organization plan and execute an information strategy that maps to your business strategy and distinguishes you from your competition.
For those that will join us I look forward to meeting with you, and for those who cannot attend in person, we’ll be carrying many of the sessions live via our LiveStream and you can follow news from the event suing the hashtag #iodgc2011.