The Manufacturing and Engineering Sector comes second in our Big Data League

The UK manufacturing and engineering industry is one of the fastest changing sectors, with new technologies such as simulation software, building information modeling and big data leading to major shifts in working practices and processes.

For this reason, it is especially important for the sector to stay on top of these new technologies, so as part of our Big Data League studies, manufacturing and engineering decision makers in the UK were questioned with regards to their big data prolificity, and revealed they are already having some success!

74% of respondents reported they have the technical knowledge in place to understand and maximise data insights, and a small majority (54%) of manufacturers said they already have big data analytics in some form in place.

Over half (57%) of respondents in this sector also see the potential to create new revenue streams as a driver for prioritising data analysis, with 61% highlighting that making processes more efficient and achieving savings was the biggest motivator, which is more than in any other sector. On top of that, many decision makers in this sector have access to sales data (72%) and product data (59%), also higher than in any other sector – earning the manufacturing and engineering industry second place in our Big Data League.

It’s great to see this sector really buying into and recognising the value of big data, but there is still more to be done. This sector scored the lowest compared to other sectors with regards to recruitment of additional technical staff with IT skills, and 41% highlighted that their IT infrastructure or organisation can’t move fast enough to make better use of data. A fifth of all respondents also reported that it can take days or even weeks to manipulate large data sets for analysis.

So where to next? With limited UK manufacturing growth, now is the time for businesses to review revenue opportunities which aren’t necessarily reliant on increased demand, such as data analytics based on customer feedback to refine products and services to drive growth and profitability. Investments in people and infrastructure are already making an impact on the sector, so the next step lies in focusing on the ability to speed up insights through the development of current systems or enabling faster development of applications.

You can read the full sector report here, or join in the conversation online using #BigDataLeague with @emcuki.

Is the IT, telecoms and media industry ready to embrace Big Data?

Any business within the Information Technology, media or telecoms industry is aware that nothing stands still, and those that do will be left behind. Deloitte reported that technology media and telecoms businesses will continue to face pressure from increasing competition, further ‘digital disruption’ and technological change. For many, these challenges won’t just come from established competitors. With lower barriers to entry and unburdened by any legacy infrastructure, new competitors that can scale operations and bring products to market faster than ever before will be a persistent challenge.

In our recent Big Data League study – a ranking of five different industry sectors based on their readiness to embrace big data – the IT, telecom and media sector demonstrated a strong understanding of the potential for big data analysis to deliver business benefits. The study revealed that:

  • 67% of decision makers in IT and telecoms / media companies recognise that prioritising big data analysis has the potential to drive new revenue streams (higher than any other sector including retail, manufacturing, public sector and financial services)
  • 58% of IT and telecoms / media companies believe they have the data analytics platform experience to help them understand and maximise big data insights
  • 62% agreed that better use of customer insights and trends, plus the alignment of business models with customer requirements, are both key to unlocking the next wave of growth for their organisation

However only:

  • 30% have access to external data sets with customer information and sales data
  • 34% feel they can manipulate a large and / or complex data set analytics within minutes
  • 38% of those questioned admitted that their current IT infrastructure was not agile enough to make use of their data to reveal trends.

As IDC states, the ICT industry is in the midst of a once every 20-25 year shift to a new technology platform to support growth and innovation; this new shift has been labelled the ‘third platform’ of computing. The third platform represents a shift in the way IT services are consumed and delivered and is creating “next generation workloads” which legacy IT infrastructure simply isn’t fast or intelligent enough to deal with at scale, cost effectively. What’s clear is that if businesses in the IT, telecoms and media sector don’t adapt to meet with the increasing demands being placed on IT by employees and customers, then in the long term they won’t be able to compete.

The IT, telecom and media sector has some way to go before it leads the EMC Big Data League table. With the next Google or Pinterest making a play to disrupt the market, companies need to capitalise on data assets, act fast and reap the rewards.

Big Data and the Public Sector

Big data holds the key to driving businesses forward, bringing in revenue streams and helping companies to better understand their customers. However, our recent Big Data League study has shown that many companies are not ready to take on the big data challenge and reap the benefits.

We recently took a look at the worst scoring sector in terms of big data readiness, Financial Services, and here we examine the public sector, which only fared slightly better in the big data league.

The UK public sector is aspiring to achieve a digital transformation, with initiatives including GOV.UK, a drive to open up data sets and the ongoing advancement in the Government’s cloud journey. Our study showed that the public sector is more ready for big data than any other sector when it comes to IT infrastructure, scoring 68% on infrastructure readiness, while almost two-thirds of the respondents recognised the value of big data when it comes to supporting new revenue streams.

But there is still a lot of work to be done. Despite the potential for the government to save an additional £24 billion per year through use of technology, according to the recent Technology Manifesto from the Policy Exchange, there are challenges. The public sector is facing a lack of skills, and an inflexible culture thwarting future progress. To reach the maturity needed to really embrace data analytics, political and organisational silos need to be broken down and best practice shared across different areas of the public sector.

We’ve pulled out the key statistics from the report for you below, and for more information on the cultural and infrastructure challenges in the public sector, read the full sector report here. Please also feel free to join in the conversation online using #BigDataLeague with @emcuki.

  • The main public sector drivers for prioritising data analysis and its use are to support new revenue streams (60%), make more money and drive growth (46%)
  • The public sector respondents report the highest degree of infrastructure readiness for big data analytics (68%)
  • However, a quarter state that it takes days to get responses to queries that interrogate organisational data, and four weeks to prototype/iterate/build data-analysis applications
  • Public sector are making significant efforts to secure the right data skills, specifically:
    • Recruiting staff with technical IT skills (51%)
    • Retraining employees (42%)
    • Recruiting data scientists / business intelligence experts (44%)