Firms years behind International competitors on technology adoption;
c-suite not engaged in decision making
TORONTO, Dec. 4, 2012 /CNW/ - Canadian businesses are at risk of falling
behind international competitors in the era of Big Data. A recent
survey conducted by IDC Canada and commissioned by SAS, has found
Canadian that while 96 per cent of Canadian companies say the ability
to process and act on data in real time is important, less than half
(48%) have invested in the technologies to do so.
The survey further finds Canadian companies are late and slow in
adoption of technology capable of processing Big Data, and strategic
data decision making is being relegated to mid-level IT managers,
rather than being viewed by the C-suite as a critical matter. By
contrast, international companies are more likely to trust these
decisions to the CIO and CFO, have a longer Big Data technology
adoption track record and more defined plans for adoption in the near
future of these technologies that are assisting organizations become
more innovative and productive.
"Organizations that have begun to embrace Big Data technology and
approaches are demonstrating that they can gain competitive advantage
by being able to take action based on timely, relevant, complete, and
accurate information, rather than guesswork. Meanwhile the challenges
of data management and analytics in the intelligent economy are likely
to overwhelm organizations that are not conversant with Big Data
technologies," said Nigel Wallis, Research Director for IDC. "For
Canadian organizations to take full advantage of the transformative
potential of their data, they need to approach it strategically. That
starts with executive understanding and ownership of data as
differentiator and an end to the pattern of delegation that has so far
characterized Canadian technology adoption."
While more than two thirds (76 per cent) of international companies
interviewed in another recent survey by SAS have already adopted
technologies, fewer than half (48 per cent) of Canadian respondent
have, and 15 per cent have no adoption plans for the future.
Mid-level IT managers in Canada are close to six times more likely than
the international average to be primarily responsible for data
management strategy, with a quarter of Canadian companies placing such
decisions in their hands versus 4 per cent internationally. Worldwide,
Chief Information Officers are the key strategy drivers for a third of
At the same time, companies are only using a fraction of the vast amount
of information available. An overwhelming majority of respondents (76
per cent) are using internally produced data, but other valuable
sources such as social media (32.7 per cent), web data (34.7 per cent),
RFID tags (26 per cent) and GPS (16.7 per cent) have yet to gain
significant traction. With Big Data technologies, analyzing these data
sources is faster and simpler than ever.
These findings are particularly surprising as 48 per cent of respondents
said the speed at which their organization processes data has increased
over the past twelve months, and moreover, more than 90 per cent of
Canadians said the ability to process and act on data in real time is
important to their organization - compared to less than 70 per cent of
Big Data presents both a challenge and opportunity to businesses. IDC
estimates that by 2020 the amount of data created and replicated will
rise to 90 zettabytes. Social interactions, mobile devices, facilities,
equipment, R&D, simulations and physical infrastructure are all part of
this. Big Data technologies, such as SAS High-Performance Analytics,
are designed to capture and store, monitor, analyze and discover trends
and patterns in near real-time.
Of the benefits respondents attributed to faster data processing, the
ability to generate operational efficiencies was most important (52 per
cent), followed by enabling informed decisioning (24.7 per cent) and
improved customer service (23.3 per cent).
"We live in a data-driven world and the companies that harness this data
are best poised for success," said Carl Farrell, SAS' Executive Vice
President of the Americas. "Whether it's helping run the business more
efficiently, improving customer service and marketing campaigns,
detecting fraud, or moving from making decisions on gut feelings to
ones based on fact, technologies such as SAS' high-performance
analytics can transform raw data into invaluable insights."
For more information about the survey, please click here.
About the Survey
The survey, conducted in August 2012, included responses from 150 senior
executives of organizations with more than C$250 million from across
Canada. Thirteen percent hailed from Atlantic Canada, 18% from Quebec,
33% from Ontario and 35% from Western Canada. Of those respondents,
50% were line of business executives and 50% were IT. Eighteen percent
hold C-level positions, 33% were VP positions while the other half held
director or managerial roles. The survey was focused on financial
services (33%), retail (33%) and telecom & utilities (33%).
SAS is the leader in business analytics software and services, and the largest independent vendor in the
business intelligence market. Through innovative solutions delivered
within an integrated framework, SAS helps customers at more than 60,000
sites improve performance and deliver value by making better decisions
faster. Since 1976 SAS has been giving customers around the world THE
POWER TO KNOW®.
The Canadian subsidiary of SAS has been in operation since 1988.
Headquartered in Toronto, SAS employs more than 300 people across the
country at its Vancouver, Calgary, Toronto, Ottawa, Quebec City and
Montréal offices. www.sas.com/canada
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© 2012 SAS Institute Inc. All rights reserved.
SOURCE: SAS Canada
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