Photo - Andrew Tan, Managing Director of SAS Malaysia
For the most part, the effects of the global economic crisis have forced organisations to rethink their operations and KPIs [key performance indicators], including the entire IT environment. As a result, organisations are more cautious when it comes to IT investments. More are asking "how and what can I do more with less". CIOs have been cautious with IT spending while new organisational blueprints are drafted. Vendors who have solutions to help oganisations "optimise" their IT spending will be winners.
2012 has been a great year in terms of awareness for analytics. Organisations have started to realise the power of analytics to transform their organisation from improving operations to improving marketing efficiency leveraging on Big Data. This naturally creates more competition in the marketplace to win market share leading to price wars. As the leader in business analytics, SAS in Malaysia is has expanded its organisation by 20 percent in order to meet the demand for best-in-class analytics.
Awareness is growing in differentiating "reactive "decision-making analytics, as is evident in the traditional BI OLAP type environments, to statistically driven "proactive" predictive analytics.
In the coming year, we expect heavy investments in analytics will be made across the organisation as CEOs have started to mandate the smart use of data and data mining to drive better business results. The challenge of securing data scientists and affecting a data driven culture will remain a determinant to success. Awareness is translating into deployment.
The prediction for 2013 is a rise in advanced business analytics usage and deployment. Executives and CIOs are grappling with the rise in data stored, which is growing at unprecedented rates (100 to 300 percent every year) - particularly unstructured data. They are seeing the need to detect patterns in the data they have as well as data which is sitting out there in the Internet to help them understand top of mind customer issues which impact their business and detecting business growth opportunities
However, organisations are challenged by data quality problems. They see this as the top barrier to adopting BI/analytics products enterprise wide. Also, with the rise in the use tablets/smartphones, the need for dashboards/data visualisations to share BI/analytic insights are increasingly becoming a must.
The global economic environment will continue to put pressure on the performance of the wider ICT industry but analytics vendors usually thrive in a down economy as analytics is able to give decision makers more visibility and clarity on the vast information that runs through their business in order to understand how to increase revenues, improve efficiency and reduce costs.
We expect investment in analytics to be prioritised in 2013. However the ability to use analytics to extract value will continue to be a barrier. In 2012, SAS added 10 new partners who have been successfully certified to deliver SAS solutions across industries including banking, insurance, telco, retail, manufacturing, government agencies and oil & gas.
As Malaysian businesses finalise their transformation plans, it is critical to incorporate analytics as an enabler. Leaving out analytics would be leaving money on the table for competitors to exploit. Start small where it would make the most business impact.