With a tsunami of data expected over the next five years (from 40 zettabytes now to 175 by 2025 according to IDC), business success and digital transformation efforts will hinge on an organization’s ability to manage, analyze, and monetize data.
In 2012, data scientist was named the sexiest job of the 21st century, and as we head into 2020, that admiration hasn’t waned. (The World Economic Forum’s Future of Jobs Report puts data analysts and scientists at the top of the emerging in-demand roles list). But business futures will be made from everyone in an organization being able to leverage data to make better-informed real-time and long-term decisions. In a recent PwC and Business-Higher Education Forum (BHEF) survey:
- 59% of employers said data science and analytics skills would be required of all finance and accounting managers by 2020
- 51% said these skills would be required by all marketing and sales managers
- 49% said they would be required of all executive leaders
- 48% said they would be required of all operations managers
Which brings us to two of six trends that Georgia Tech Executive Professor of Analytics Beverly Wright says she is watching right now in the evolution of analytics:
- Deliberate data-culture initiatives: Companies openly articulating their need to shift their organization’s culture to become more data inspired in decision making, from strategic down to tactical decisions. “They’re also starting to put initiatives in place to encourage this shift and move the environment along more quickly,” notes Wright, “with hopes that this priming will help increase the absorption and adoption of analytics solutions.”
- Tool reliance and more citizen analysts: “Accepting secret sauce as a core ingredient may become more commonplace, and trust in packaged analytics processes could breed more citizen analysts across organizations,” says Wright. “This trend may be a bit disturbing for some, but the growing need for analytics solutions and workers may lead the higher tolerance of placing sophisticated tools in the hands of professionals with less data science knowledge.”
The dynamic nature and improved capabilities for analytics continues to excite and enable companies and even individuals to do more and in better ways. —Beverly Wright
Some analytics solutions are going one step further to bridge the data literacy and skills divide. The design point in business intelligence over the next few years is not going to be for that 30% of employees who “live for, love, and linger over box plots, Gantt charts, and Sankey diagrams,” says MicroStrategy CMO Marge Breya.
“The new design point is going to be for every person, and every device, delivering intelligence in a way that’s easily consumed by the individual, from a single source of truth. Zero-click, self-evident analytics will trump self-service in 2019.
“It’s time in the enterprise that if you hover over a certain name or word, step up to a screen in your office or company, or are querying Alexa, that the information and insights you want to see (or should see) come to you, rather than you having to go look in another application or report.”
As the volume, complexity, and sources of data grow, keep an eye on those organizations that make it simple for their employees. They’ll be the big winners as the evolution of analytics accelerates.
Want to know more about what today’s top analytics thought leaders say requires your organization’s attention now? Download the eBook, 10 Enterprise Analytics Trends to Watch in 2019, to read insights from Beverly Wright, Forrester analyst Mike Gualtieri, Constellation Research’s Ray Wang and Doug Henschen, Ventana Research’s Mark Smith and David Menninger, IDC’s Chandana Gopal, Marcus Borba, Ronald van Loon, and more.