4月 172012

How big does big data need to be before it is valuable?

High Performance Analytics levels the Big Data playing field

High Performance Analytics levels the Big Data playing field

The value in big data is within reach of everyone.  It could mean wanting to mine a couple of extra fields about the customer or wanting to improve the customer profile using unstructured data about customer interactions using Hadoop. Most articles and hype about big data surround the three Vs;  Velocity, Variety and Volume.  However, we should never lose sight that big data is relative to your business plan. The real conversation to be had is about the value in being nimble. 

The 4th (V)alue: The intersection of big data and high performance analytics
High performance analytics is the next generation of analytical focus as we work our way through the era of big data looking for optimal ways to gain insight in shorter reporting windows. It is all about getting to the relevant data quicker and delivering that information in real time. High performance analytics is equipping David-sized organisations with the tools to level the playing field.  Examples include:

  • How a bank determines credit risk assessment in seconds instead of hours.
  • Where a government agency improves social welfare by analysing unstructured citizen interaction data.
  • An insurance company that uses census data to improve marketing response rates.
  • How an online business analyses social data to understand sentiment, and behavioral data to improve campaign targeting.

Regional healthcare provider and an insurers point of view

I recently listened to an Australian healthcare customer discuss their version of big data and high performance analytics. It went like this.

Through some acquisitions we have increased our data base size by approximately 15 percent.  This has resulted in our marketing teams being frustrated with longer than usual time-to-market for gaining customer intelligence and executing campaigns.  Further compounding the issue is the competitive pressure coming from recent changes in government legislation, which is driving customers to shop around.  This increase in competition means marketing needs to be more nimble.  Meaning more campaigns to fewer people with more relevance.

Another example is a local Insurance customer I met with to discuss their version of big data, high performance analytics and real-time analytics.

We have issued our sales force with iPads.  The challenge we face is, how do we deliver intelligence to our sales representatives in a manner where we know it is relevant, timely and contextual?  We know they are meeting with prospects and customers but how do we analyse customer data, analytical data, transactional data and interaction data to provide a Next Best Offer in seconds?

If we understand how to beat Goliath, do we know what to beat him with?  A high performance approach leads us to think about the problem differently and look for a solution that optimises the analytical jobs and the way they were architecturally executed.  I expect there is a target value proposition heading my way, now.

Under the hood: high performance analytics is not that scary

We often think of new technology as being like a Ferrari, always thinking it is out of reach or too complex for the average David.  The reality is high performance analytics provides various approaches that span the spectrum of your maturity and size, from:

  • Moving existing analytical models into operational processes for real-time decisions.
  • Optmising analytical jobs to leverage your existing in-database power.
  • Using in-memory analytics to take advantage of cheaper hardware.
  • Building an enterprise analytical platform to drive down TCO while always prioritising business value using a grid based approach.
  • Visually exploring big data using high-performance, interactive, in-memory capabilities to understand all your data, discover new patterns and publish reports to the web and mobile devices.

The democratisation of analytics, especially high performance analytics has allowed every company whether Goliath or David-sized to benefit from big data.  Over the next few weeks we will be discussing the impact of the intersection with big data and high performance analytics.  In particular providing examples relevant to the world we live in left of the date line. Join the discussion to find out what the innovators are doing and lessons we can learn locally.  You can see some more examples here.

What is your big data opportunity? Tell us in the comments below.

tags: big data, customer intelligence, Hadoop, healthcare, high performance analytics, HPA, in-memory analytics
11月 012011
When discussing fraud and abuse, it often (very often) becomes a philosophical discussion of whether aberrant activities are fraudulent or abusive. The quick difference being that fraudulent is intentional and abuse is not.  The distinction quickly becomes an issue of legal and illegal as opposed to right and wrong. What [...]
7月 082011
Due to the rapid changes in both the health care market and more specifically the amount of fraud being committed in it, it is even more important than ever to maintain some degree of life cycle management to update the analyses used to detect and identify aberrant activity.

However, many organizations do not have the resources or the expertise to maintain the performance of their analytical methods. Quite a few organizations build transactional rules or models and then continue to use them for years (in some cases four or five years). And even though the analysis has degraded (sometimes by as much as 60 percent), they continue to use the same analytical methods year after year.

Without proper tools and methodologies in place, it is very difficult to manually maintain fraud analytical methods.

Continue reading "Why life cycle management matters for health care fraud analysis"
5月 182011
We are very pleased to co-sponsor a terrific Webcast with PharmExec Magazine on May 19 at 2:00pm ET (available on demand afterward) titled, Customer Intimacy – the Pharma Challenge. This is our opportunity to zero in on an industry with dynamics so complex that customer analytics holds great promise.

Like the closely related healthcare and health insurance plans industries, the pharmaceutical industry operates in regulatory environment that can make simply identifying their customers as straightforward as the lines in a bowl of spaghetti. So what does that do for marketing to them effectively? Just think about how purchase decisions can be made for pharmaceuticals – whether it is over the counter or prescription medications.

Let’s see - Am I their customer? I sure am! Is my doctor their customer? Yep – she is, too based on what she prescribes. How about my health insurance plan? Well, they do weigh in on some choices, don’t they? (like requiring generics, for example) Do I ever ask the pharmacist at the corner drug store for advice? Oh yeah, I almost forgot about them. Do hospitals buy pharmaceuticals? Of course - many of them by the truckload. How about the federal government? Ever hear of Medicare Part D?? Sure enough – CMS is also a customer (a big one) of pharma companies, when seniors are the patients. How about state governments? A fair number of them provide subsidies to some portions of their populations. I could go on and on with just identifying "customers" for pharma companies because each one of those entities named above exerts some influence in the decision for which drug to use. In the end, however, it always comes down to the patient actually taking the drug.

So the question for pharma boils down to this – how intimate can your marketing be with your customer? With all those layers and lines in the mix, that appears to be the $825 Billion question. And with increasingly digital-savvy, socially-connected consumers, can pharma companies be relevant with consumers? Can they engage with them in ways that create lasting relationships that build long-term value?

Well, it turns out that intimacy (and the marketing success that results) is not as elusive as one might expect. We invite you to tune in to hear this engaging discussion with experts from Sanofi-Aventis (Hans Sjoquist), Digitas Health (Mark Miller) and a Marketing Professor from Oklahoma State University (Dr. Goutan Chakraborty). Our esteemed panel plans to explore how to:

  • Gather deeper insights to customer behavior and needs,
  • Manage the unique challenges that the world of digital presents,
  • Leverage new found insights for meaningful dialogue to boost relevance, and
  • Create a continuous learning process to constantly improve.

Tune in and let us know what you think!