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Preparing for Big Data: 10 Things CIOs Can Do Now

Emerging trends in many industries are opening up multiple opportunities for Big Data analytics.  Given the sensitivity of data security, and the fact that leveraging Big Data implies cultural changes that require time to take hold, CIOs need to start preparing diligently now for a secure, robust analytic capability.  WGroup has identified 10 things CIOs can do before even the first Big Data project is launched: 

  1. Review the organization’s strategic plan for opportunities to apply big data analytics.  Identify an analytics-savvy team within the organization to help with brainstorming ideas.
  2. Develop and execute an educational awareness campaign on Big Data possibilities.
  3. Inventory all the data that is available – structured and unstructured, internal and external, streaming and operational.
  4. Architect the required infrastructure and establish an investment plan.
  5. Identify potential third parties to assist if required in specific parts of the process, e.g., opportunity definition, hosting, data modeling, data sourcing, etc.
  6. Develop a Big Data pilot program that is concise, executable and delivers results quickly.
  7. Develop, identify and/or recruit the skills required to execute and capitalize on the Big Data pilot projects.
  8. Develop an organization strategy and governance model to support, manage, and leverage the expanded analytics capability.
  9. Update security policies and key procedures such as change control to establish a foundation for the program.
  10. Chart out the funding profile for a multi-year Big Data program – make it a key part of the strategic plan.

Big Data has the potential to generate significant value to an organization, but it is a multi-step, iterative journey, and the risks in terms of security, compliance and invalid conclusions are real.  By establishing a robust Big Data-ready operating environment CIOs can confidently lead the organization to embrace the opportunities Big Data can provide.

Further Reading: WGroup recently published a Strategy Brief titled “Starting Small with Big Data.” Click here to download a complimentary copy.

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For over ten years, Dr. Eric Liang has been advising C-level executives across a broad spectrum of industries that included automotive, aerospace, energy, pharmaceutical, electronics, consumer packaged goods, and non-profits on operational transformation and organizational transformation initiatives.
 

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