Friday Data Stories: Big Data driven decision making

Everyone wants to make good decisions.  And as everyone knows, to make good decision you need data. Not just any data, but the right data.  In the good old days, when data was easy and uncomplicated to access, the hard part in making a good decision was making the decision. Today, that’s changed.  The hard part in making a good decision is accessing data.  That’s because data has become complex and difficult to access: it’s everywhere and there’s loads of both structured and unstructured data everywhere in a company. And more of it is generated every day.

I recently read an interesting article in SearchDataManagement titled, Embrace ‘big data’ now or fall behind the competition, analyst warns.  The article discusses how it’s become a business imperative for companies to access their data in order to make better decisions and therefore remain competitive.  For manufacturing companies improved decision making translates to improved innovation and competitiveness.  But here’s the catch.  Not everyone is taking advantage of their data (big or otherwise).   According to the article, here’s why:

There is certainly no shortage of hype around big data management technologies, but actual adoption levels remain low for two main reasons, according to Kelly. First, Hadoop and other big data technologies are extremely difficult to use and the right skill sets are in short order. Today, organizations often hire PhDs to handle the analytics side of the big data equation, and those well-educated individuals demand high salaries. ”The skills used to manage, deploy and monitor Hadoop are not necessarily the same skills that an Oracle DBA might have,” Kelly said.  “For instance, if you want to be a data scientist on the analytics side, you need to know how to write MapReduce jobs, which is not the same as writing SQL queries by any means.” The second major obstacle standing in the way of increased adoption centers on the notion that most companies currently lack the mindset required to get the most out of big data.

The passage above resonates because Inforbix addresses the ‘complexity of data’ challenges manufacturing companies and organizations face.  The unique value of Inforbix is its ability to extract and aggregate data from different data sources such as PDM/PLM systems and files (e.g. CAD).  This results in simplified data access and data analysis for decision support.  Here’s a screen shot of how Inforbix (using the Dashboards app) aggregates and consolidates data from three different PDM systems (Enovia SmarTeam, SolidWorks EPDM, and Autodesk Vault) onto a single set of dashboards that monitor changes or updates to assist decision making (more examples will be coming soon):

Conclusion.  Accessing data is now the critical path in making good decisions in manufacturing companies.  Inforbix provides data apps that seamlessly aggregate and access data from many different sources and locations within a company.  It makes accessing data of all types, e.g. big data, engineering data, CAD data, structured data, and unstructured data, for improved decision support possible for companies of all sizes.  Would having a means of quickly and easily accessing data in your company help improve decision making?

Best, Oleg