Today, enterprise data is growing exponentially and raising questions about how to manage big data for the best enterprise value.

In business, things can be going along well and then you can be faced with a challenging situation. The event may appear random at first, but then when you look at it in hindsight, there are usually signs that have been missed, perhaps because they were imperceptible at the time. 

But if you were looking at the right pieces of information and measuring their impact alongside, you would have been able to blunt the impact of that event or perhaps avoid it altogether. Sounds like a very familiar situation, doesn’t it?

Well, if yes, there’s a need for you to divert your focus on “data” and identify ways to analyze your data effectively. There’s a sea of data and information that is available to organizations, and predictive data analytics is key to business success. How do we extract the signals from the noise and know what information to focus on? How can we measure something more intangible, like innovation, to know that we’re keeping ahead of the competition? All these answers lie in predictive analytics. 

ITWC’s newest event, Analytics Unleashed, focused on the importance of predictive analytics in helping organizations around the world unleash the real potential of data analytics.

The keynote was delivered by Doug Hubbard, founder of the leading American consulting firm Hubbard Decision Research. Specializing in helping organizations measure intangibles like customer satisfaction, organizational flexibility, technology, risk and technology return on investment, Hubbard pointed out he knows from his experience that organizations are not very good at measuring intangibles, unaided.

Hubbard emphasizes that the definition of measurement itself is misunderstood by many. “Measurement is not a point value, instead it is a quantitatively expressed reduction in uncertainty based on observation,” he explained. Moving on, Hubbard talked about some tools and methodologies organizations can use to help managers make less risky decisions, and gain the insights from their data that will allow them to succeed. He tells us that when we seek metrics to solve problems, we’re really trying to know something better than we know now which is a good thing and a great start for organizations.

Moving on, Steve Bickerton, an analytics expert at SAP, talks about predictive analytics, one of the hot trends that organizations need to keep an eye on. An important analytical technique, predictive analytics is used by many organizations to identify risk, determine future business trends, and understand when maintenance is needed. Using historical data as their source, enterprises apply machine learning techniques and different regression analyses to identify and interpret patterns and trends contained within that data.

Bickerton explains how predictive analytics works, and why you don’t need a data scientist to see its value in everything from financial forecasting to preventative maintenance to optimizing a product selling price, or scheduling production for high yield and minimal waste.

Yogi Schulz, a founding partner, and a senior consultant at Calgary-based IT and management consulting firm Corvelle Consulting, shares some things not to do when it comes to data visualization. Schulz explains how one can make data visualization more powerful so it will communicate your message better, while also pointing out some serious but common data visualization bloopers and things we can all learn from. 

In addition to the insights shared by data experts, case study presentations from organizations around the world and live discussions, all around data analytics, helped send participants away with practical strategies they can apply in their own organizations. 

This content was originally published here.