Smart Data Transformation – Surfing the Big Wave

Press release / 1.12.2016

Companies are aware of the potential of Big Data in a digitized world. Which benefits are they actually reaping today? How important are smart data transformation projects at the moment? To better understand the present and future value of Big Data and the factors determining the success of smart data transformation projects, Infosys Consulting and Fraunhofer FIT's Project Group Business & Information Systems Engineering surveyed corporate decision-makers.

© Photo Infosys Consulting / Fraunhofer FIT

Current and expected business benefits of smart data transformation.

© Photo Infosys Consulting / Fraunhofer FIT

Current and expected business benefit for different business areas.

In the digital age, business organizations can benefit from exploiting internal as well as external data. Smart utilization of insights from analyzing and examining large volumes of data can give businesses a significant competitive advantage. In particular, at the interface to actual and potential customers, these insights can help improve the interaction with customers and generate novel business models.

Experts agree that most businesses are aware of the growing potential benefits of processing and analyzing large amounts of data. It is still unclear, however, whether businesses are well prepared to cope with these new challenges and whether the currently implemented data analysis processes actually generate added value. It is also unclear how important Big Data analysis is for business today.

To answer these questions, the Project Group Business & Information Systems Engineering of the Fraunhofer Institute for Applied Information Technology FIT has teamed up with Infosys Consulting to conduct an international study that covered a broad selection of industries and different organizational units. The study aimed for a better understanding of the current situation in businesses. At its core is an online survey of 60 international decision-makers in different industries. The questionnaire focuses on smart data transformation, which we defined for this study as systematically collecting, aggregating and analyzing large amounts of data.

»As a whole, the results of the study give us a comprehensive picture of the current and future importance of smart data transformation. Presently, our respondents see smart data transformation generate just a moderate economic benefit. However, over the next few years they envisage very significant potential benefits«, says Prof. Nils Urbach, deputy head of Fraunhofer FIT's Project Group Business & Information Systems Engineering, located in Bayreuth.

The skills and knowledge required of their staff are a major worry of our respondents, but they expect to see significant progress in this area over the next few years. For them, high availability and accuracy of customer data will also be a major factor in the future. In spite of the challenges that most respondents saw immediately ahead, a clear majority has a very optimistic view of the future, expecting rapid change that can, however, be managed as long as the appropriate methods and processes are used.

Download the comprehensive final report of the study: