As originally posted on: http://www.quora.com/Sanchita-Lobo-Jigsaw-Academy/Posts/Big-Data-The-Revolution-Impacting-us-in-More-Ways-Than-we-Know

Gone are the days of door-to-door sales, stereotyping, number crunching, and shot-in-the-dark marketing strategies. The age-old theory where the trajectory from the sender to the consumer was a one-way street has lost all substantial proof of existence. And all of this is because of the ever-looming presence of Big Data; the good guy with answers to every business hurdle. Big Data has aided start-ups, SMEs and MNCs in:

  1. Understanding consumer behavior and buying patterns: Retail or wholesale, finding suitable customers for a business can be a task on its own. Big Data can address the gap between supplier and consumer by tracking their needs, preferences, previous purchases, etc apart from gaining access to their earlier buys and transactions from the bank. This is done online as well as off.  
  1. Optimizing processes and enhancing security: Be it functionality or profitability, Big Data optimizes both efficiently and boosts the productivity or work process as well as employees. Additionally Big Data has also increased information security where the trend today sees companies shifting from Relational Database Management systems to more sophisticated information security architectures that support larger information storage.
  1. Keeping operations in check: Big Data finds increasing use in tracking compliance and audit checks and responding to queries and customer complaints in real-time information as well as market trends.
  1. Thinking outside the box: The Big Data available today goes beyond the realm of one industry and can be accessed or shared with anyone. With the help of this publicly available data (unstructured or otherwise), business plans are no longer restricted to straight jacketed formulae. With all this data in hand, all companies have to do is connect the dots.

Quentin Gallivan, CEO of big-data analytics provider Pentaho, once stated, “The market is at a ‘tipping point’ as big-data platforms move beyond the experimentation phase and begin doing real work.” Let’s explore just some of these real and practical uses of Big Data that go beyond the regular realms of utilization, and cross over to industries all over the globe.

  • Allocating police resources to eventually decrease crime rates in cities
  • Regulating government policies
  • Managing disasters and outages rapidly and accurately
  • Improving public health in developing and poverty stricken nations
  • Determining of traits such as resistance to Malaria
  • Pollution control and finding alternative to preserve the environment
  • Genomic analysis across organisms
  • Improving accuracy of search and recommendation engines
  • Better fraud/ forgery/phishing detection
  • Easy archiving as well as access to records
  • More customized and targeted marketing, pricing and selling
  • Better encryption and monitoring systems to allow the creation of new, private currencies
  • Early detection of epidemics
  • Geo-marketing via cell phones

The uses of Big Data are never-ending and it’s just a matter of times before it finds a use in every facet of daily business and functioning. And remember with Big Data, it is not just the quantity of data collected that is revolutionary. As Gary King, Weatherhead University Professor explains it, “The Big Data revolution is that now we can do something with the data. It lies in improved statistical and computational methods, not in the exponential growth of storage or even computational capacity.”

So for business looking to enhance revenues and business, they must learn to manage their data efficiently and more importantly, use it effectively. They need to invest in the right kind of data management and data talent. For us everyday folks….all we need to do is be aware of our data rights and responsibilities and watch in wonder as Big Data throws it’s shadow over every facet of our lives.

Interested in a career in Big Data? Check out Jigsaw Academy’s Big Data courses and see how you can get trained to become a Big Data specialist.

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