Data can only be turned into an asset if processed; otherwise, it becomes like dust, becoming a liability to any organisation.

The first complete and formal writing system, cuneiform, is believed to be invented in Mesopotamia between 3400 and 3300 BC1. Since then, our species has been innovating various methods for generating, communicating, and storing data.

At the onset of the third industrial revolution, we began processing and accumulating vast amounts of diverse data. Digitisation took over, and we migrated our data from print to digital formats. Relational database management systems are widely used to store the data, and the volumes brought to these systems have dramatically increased. There are now over 79 Zettabytes of data globally; this amount is expected to grow to around 181 Zettabytes by 2025. If every Gigabyte in a Zettabyte were a kilometre, it could span the maximum east-west distance of Turkey more than 600.000.000 times. If every Terabyte in a Zettabyte were a kilometre, it could span the entire rail transport network of the Netherlands over 310.000 times.

Volumes of data alone are not enough to measure its impact. The definition of big data is the 4Vs of data: volume, velocity, variety, and value.

Velocity (generation speed of the data) and variety (structured and unstructured types) of data are increasing alongside volume, converting data into big data. The ultimate goal is not to have a big data environment but to derive value from this information.

How to achieve data-driven transformation

Data can only be turned into an asset if processed; otherwise, it becomes like dust, becoming a liability to any organisation. Discovering new digital data sources (mines) and integrating them into current enterprise data is the first step to achieving data-driven transformations. Once we unearth new methods, we can seek solutions to business obstacles by discovering new digital data mines and incorporating more diverse and rapidly growing data into the organisation. After that point, we need to excavate and start extracting value from the data, therefore turning dust into gold. Data not processed is a liability to businesses, not an asset.

The impact of processed data

Organisations spend precious time generating value from enterprise data, and there are many ways to maximise its potential. Unlocking data is a golden key to success and could mean a sustainable competitive advantage for businesses. A strong data management strategy is more critical than ever because we have the potential to powerfully reclaim the answers to the questions that we ask of big data.

Processing data could reveal many benefits in key strategic areas such as reinforcing investment decisions, innovating new products or supporting productisation processes and measuring the impacts of marketing efforts. The advantages also extend to understanding employees’ needs, boosting productivity with effective business process management, or slashing general administrative expenses and other costs. Myriad paths are waiting to be extracted from enterprise data through advanced analytics and data science.

Staying ahead in a shifting landscape

Our environment and needs are ever-changing. As we are now living in a digital world, every step we take generates new data. Consumers demand new services and products, and they want them swiftly; organisations must be agile and data-oriented to seize the demand and respond quickly to customers’ ever-changing needs.

Data is now at the core of success and an integral business tool for any company. Organisations have started to operate in data-driven leadership, leaving intuitive decision-making behind. Leveraging data to guide decision-making processes with data science and advanced analytics could identify new business opportunities and inform strategic plans. Plugging in external data sources and merging them with current enterprise data can create a data warehouse, a prerequisite to building a proper advanced data analytics practice. Furthermore, having a data platform will achieve outstanding business benefits from artificial intelligence because data fuels AI.

Believing in the power of data

We, as Metyis, believe in the power of data, and we constantly seek new ways to merge strategic ideas and data to craft bespoke solutions to overcome business obstacles. To us, strategy and data are intertwined. One affects the other in many ways. Prior to any crucial strategic decision, data should always be considered. If there is a strategy, you create more data and, with more data, you create new strategies.

It is estimated that 95% of decisions that incorporate data can be partially automated. Tapping into the age of automation and AI will lead us to rapid decision-making fuelled by data. This innovation will drive a significant competitive advantage. Thanks to data analytics and AI, more organisations will become data-oriented and create a mindset shift towards data-driven decisions. Data and analytics will continue to alter the DNA of organisations.

About the author behind the article

Ogan Ozdogan is a senior leader in the IT industry with over 15 years of experience in sales, data management and consulting and he worked with large enterprises, government entities and senior executives and has an entrepreneurial spirit. Ogan holds an MBA degree, authored two books on Big Data and Industry 4.0 concepts.