The highway to our digital future: Comments on three top trends

Big Data, the Internet of Things and the Cloud have topped the trends lists for a while now but what do they mean for businesses in 2015?

Big Data, the Internet of Things and the Cloud have topped the trends lists for a while now but what do they mean for businesses in 2015?

Big Data, the Internet of Things and the Cloud are not new trends but their significance is changing in the enterprise in 2015. Find out why.

Big Data

Today’s new devices generate so much data that we need skilled resources to interpret the minutiae so that enterprises can make informed business decisions. As the quantity of data continues to grow, those skills will grow more complex—and more essential.

I often hear people say, “We’ve got to collect all the data and find a way to crunch it.” But when strategizing Big Data, business leaders also need to consider these questions:

    • How much data does a business require for valid business decisions?
    • How much budget, computing power and human capital should we throw at crunching data?
    • What kind of value will the business get from Big Data, and will it justify the investment?

Don’t let “analysis paralysis” set in

But wait: If organizations don’t define actionable goals and determine how deep to dig before committing to action, “analysis paralysis” could set in.

There’s a tipping point beyond which we get diminishing returns. In 2015, businesses need to refine their Big Data strategy and make headway in determining where that tipping point lies.

While some software addresses analytics, moving data between the system of record and the analytics environment, or scheduling and automating tasks, no end-to-end solution exists. It’s important for enterprises to strategize and prioritize now and partner with trusted software companies by providing requirements, thus helping to develop solutions.

Those proactive enterprises will lead the pack in capturing Big Data’s competitive advantage when a comprehensive solution becomes available.

The Internet of Things

As IoT-connected devices proliferate, leading companies will leverage the IoT to expand their value to customers, communicate with users via wearable technologies and other tools, and develop new sources of revenue.

But what I find most interesting about the IoT is that it’s changing the way we live, from navigation systems as a baseline expectation in new cars to backyard BBQers (including Mark Zuckerberg) using wireless thermometer apps to keep tabs on their steaks and “share” their meals on Facebook.

 The Cloud

Big Data and the IoT are two big reasons that organizations are gearing up to move to the cloud, but for all the excitement, the cloud is just another iteration of the Internet. While it’s strong for one-dimensional transactions, such as using Amazon Web Services to secure an environment to work in, completing a transaction that touches several suppliers is still challenging.

The next milestones in making the cloud more viable will be finding sustainable ways to federate systems, move easily between private and commercial, cloud-based data centers, monitor systems and maintain service levels as effectively as on premise. Of course, each organization needs to find a way to control and enforce processes that won’t also choke them. That will necessitate efficient rules and requirements that drive the solution’s control and enforcement components.

 Thinking beyond the trends

Enterprises looking to leverage Big Data, the IoT and the cloud also have to resolve an overarching concern: the security of their own data and that of their employees and customers. My next post will explore security-related trends.

I’d love to hear about the roadblocks and successes you’ve encountered on the highway to our digital future, so please add your comments below.


As the general manager of CA services and education, Chris leads the global CA technologies…

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