Monday, April 15, 2013

Big Data and Business Intelligance

I was in an important government conference last week which was attended by key ICT Officers coming from both the National and Local Government Organization. I was one of the lead presenter to an Interactive Discussion Table (IDT) together with a former high ranking ICT Officer from the Australian Government. Our topic was on big data and the advantage of having to use Business Intelligence. Although it maybe something new to some, what most of them didn't realize was that in one way or another some have already started making some sort of analysis on information that has been collected for many years.

From simple analysis on gender and age demographics to as complex cross referencing of data across organizations related to spatial information, business analytics is slowly gaining a lot of attention lately. With budgets shrinking year on year and government service delivery exponentially growing due to an ever growing clientele which is very much tied to population by the way, business intelligence will play a key role in analyzing how to rationalize delivery of services to the public.

As a example, imagine being able to cross reference GIS information on road specification and condition to information on traffic, interactively. You will now have a new thought process on what to advise the public and on how to plan and design roads better in the future and what policies to implement and not by just simply guessing but making an intelligent decision backed by real live data. The whole concept on traffic management would be totally be different. Automated data collection coming from crowd sourcing will suddenly make sense and planning would even be more flexible and dynamic.

So going back to big data and business intelligence, of course one has to consider one very key important element here. A person who asks the right questions. Asking the right questions ultimately makes sense on why we collect such information and how we process such information. Until one person asks the right questions and see a clear direction where the organization is going and why, we could be collection petabytes and yottabytes of information with it ending in storage facilities inside the organization or on a cloud facility somewhere and not make sense at all. Well for one, the vendors would love that because the more you collect and store information the more money for them. I'm seeing business intelligence will be one hot topic that will come out from time to time and getting into the mainstream of our country's governance and will be here to stay...

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