In the recent times, no other technical word has invoked a mixed response as Big Data. The clear push by major brands and large companies to leverage the benefits of Big Data is evident from the fact that the highest paid jobs in the IT Industry are around Big Data. The social listening and all the articles around the internet adds complexity to the already complex scenario rather than simplifying it.
The definition of Big Data in itself has been so complex that, Jonathan Stuart Ward and Adam Barker at the University of Scotland conducted a survey to analyze what really Big Data stands for and means for various companies. Though this survey was conducted back in 2013, the same confusion around the definition of Big Data still exists today.
This confusion around the Big Data which is often synonymous with enormous sets of unstructured data, data warehousing, machine learning, data servers to process the data etc. have created a sense of fear among the businesses. These fears are overshadowing the necessity to seize the opportunities and value addition Big Data can offer to the business intelligence. The complexity and cost of implementation has a huge bearing on low adaptability of Big Data by SMEs.
Though you might find many definitions for Big Data, the core value addition that Big Data brings is the ability to have more data at your disposal to make informed decisions. It allows the decision makers to back their decisions with facts over gut. As the businesses create and store more transactional data, it provides an opportunity to identify trends and valuable insights about customer behavior.
Once you move away from the noise surrounding the definition of Big Data and start concentrating on the benefits it can offer, it starts looking like a more familiar territory. The concept of using historic data to identify trends and any leading indicators has been practiced for long. Now that we live in digital world and everything is connected, the volume data that can be collected has increasing at an exponential rate. Big Data implementation initiatives empower businesses to leverage the benefits of all these data points being collected. It is not the size of the data that makes it “Big” but the rate at which this data is generated making it “Big”.