Report: What Companies Want—and Don’t—From Analytics Providers

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Self-service data preparation, automation, and a faster time to business value are key features companies seek in real-time analytics solutions.

Analytics use is expanding quickly and becoming more crucial to businesses as the demand for real-time decision-making rises, according to a survey of 2,000 business professionals conducted by Salesforce.

Some key takeaways from Salesforce’s 2015 State of Analytics report include:

  • 90% of high performers—companies who rated their business performance much stronger than the competition—say analytics is absolutely critical to their company’s business strategy.
  • High performers were four times more likely to have 80% or more of their data available for real-time decision making
  • Analytics are for everyone. High performers are twice as likely to have half or more of their employees also using analytics. The most successful companies are making analytics and the insights gleaned from them available to everyone from board members to those on the production floor and warehouse. This has helped mold the trend toward mobile, real-time access to data.

The study also looked at the top considerations made by companies when choosing analytics tools. Not surprisingly, speed, ease of use, mobile access and self-service tools are at the top.

Top complaints and roadblocks to developing analytics solutions include lack of automation, slow turn around, and too much data left unanalyzed. The report stated that this pointed to a demand for comprehensive, real-time analytics with self-service data preparation functionality.

The report also stated that between 2015-2020, the number of data sources analyzed by companies is expected to rise by 83%, resulting in a 10-year growth total of 120%.

Our insight: The Salesforce report strongly reinforces some trends already brewing in real-time analytics. We previously covered why self-service data preparation is a key feature of real-time analytics solutions and why analytics needs to be put in the hands of business professionals who can make decisions based on the data. This could include embedding analytics in applications such as customer-relationship management systems where business users can access the analytics, as well as visualization tools that allow such data to inform decisions. Software vendors that can automate the ingestion and analysis of data—yet still allow companies to pick, choose and explore relationships among varied data sources—will be a step ahead of the game.


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