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TECHNOLOGY

5 Key Performance Indicators for Data and Analytics

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5 Key Performance Indicators for Data and Analytics

The ability to access and utilize data in a timely manner is essential for data-driven decision making.

Implementing effective data and analytics solutions that significantly influence a company depends on many different factors, including technology, data and analytics KPI, governance, and more.

Among them, data and analytics KPI is one crucial aspect that serves as a centerpiece in data and analytics.

Data is referred to as the pieces of information that have been converted into a format that can be moved or processed quickly. Data is information, transformed into binary digital form for use with modern computers and communication mediums. In its simplest basic digital form, data is referred to as “raw data.”  On the other hand, analytics combines data and arithmetic to make predictions about the future, identify relationships and automate decision-making. Based on applied mathematics, predictive modeling, statistics and machine learning approaches, this broad area of computer science is used to detect significant patterns in data and unearth new understanding. These days, a majority of firms view analytics as a key asset, and it plays a crucial role in many essential functions and competencies. 

KPIs, or key performance indicators, on the other hand, are tools that can help businesses in monitoring and measuring their key performances to achieve organizational goals. KPIs play a crucial role in assisting an entire organization’s efforts to ensure that they meet their desired end results. KPIs are important for organizations because they can help them in ensuring that all the teammates are providing value by tracking their performances with the help of key performance indicators. Furthermore, talking about KPIs in data and analytics, businesses can make the most of their data and analytics by tracking key measures for the same. With this understanding of data, analytics, and KPIs, let’s further explore data and analytics KPIs.

Data and Analytics KPI

An organization can perform best when it sets a target and achieves them in a timely manner. However, to measure if they are on the right track, having KPIs set for the same can be crucial. While tracking performance for your data and analytics, there are various key performance indicators or KPIs to look into. Given below are a few data and analytics KPIs.

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Business Impact

With the assistance of data and analytics, businesses aim at providing the best customer experience to their customers. After all, better customer service assists businesses in increasing profits. Organizations may harness their data and use data and analytics to find new opportunities in the market. This results in wiser company decisions, more effective operations, greater profitability and happier clients. Businesses that employ data and analytics benefit in a variety of ways. Moreover, data and analytics impact businesses in terms of cost reduction, creation of new products, informed decision-making and more. Therefore, business impact happens to be one of the most crucial KPIs in data and analytics for businesses while tracking their performance indicators.

Time from Insight to Action

Many businesses need help understanding their data and deriving value from their significant data investments to incorporate actions through proper insights. Additionally, actionable insight is one of the many buzzwords circulating in the business world. Businesses are discovering that setting vague goals and hoping for results is no longer sufficient as data-driven procedures take over the commercial world. Instead, the only way to stay ahead of the modern market is to use key performance indicators (KPIs) that make insights trackable and direct. The issue is that even though KPIs are now routinely implemented by most firms, a surprising amount of managers still need help making their insights actionable.

Actionable insights must always start with precise business objectives. After all, taking action will only be possible if the business knows what they are tracking. This is an incredibly crucial fundamental aspect in the era of big data. Therefore, the implementation of clearly defined business goals coupled with targeted KPIs enables the production of actionable insights that are always geared toward priorities. Although to better use insights is to also understand that it all starts with unfiltered data. Data is the unfiltered, raw fact typically presented as numbers and text. Data might be qualitative or quantitative in its form. It generally resides in databases and spreadsheets and is available in computer-friendly formats. Data that has been processed, compiled and organized into a more readable format with additional context is called information. Reports, dashboards and data visualizations are common ways to present information. The process of examining data and coming to conclusions produces insights. Both data and information enable the finding of insights that can then affect decisions and spur change. Although one can draw as many conclusions as possible from data, not all will be actionable. Some ideas can be beyond your comprehension, and you might decide to dismiss them. In general, an insight that motivates action is more important than one that only provides a response, especially if it forces you to reconsider something and steers you in a different direction.

For instance, a Fitbit watch provides various activity information, including steps, miles, calories burned, and BPM (heartbeats per minute). The watch currently indicates how many steps you have taken. Without additional context, this information is largely meaningless. Numerous data tables and information visualizations are available in the Fitbit app too, including a weekly steps report. This trended data explains if you are on a better trajectory than before. With a little extra effort, you could meet your daily goal, whereas insight tells how many steps you need to complete in the next hour to achieve your target. Therefore, having actionable insights as one of the KPIs is significantly beneficial for any business to progress in the right direction.

Data Quality

Data quality is essential because it determines whether information can be used for its intended purpose in a given context. Inadequate data can result in expensive errors, lost productivity and subpar business decisions. Your business could lose money by sending out multiple mailings or shipping items to the wrong addresses if client data contains duplicate records or incomplete or incorrect information. Everyday business operations are frequently delayed by these mistakes because data entry staff must deal with the confusion they produce.

Most crucially, terrible business decisions are caused by poor data quality. Your firm may end up with a product that performs poorly, resulting in lost sales and dwindling market share if customer analytics suggest that moving forward with a new product idea is best for the company, but those analytics later prove to have been influenced by inaccurate data. The same worries surface when AI and machine learning become more important in guiding operational decisions. Poor data quality causes AI and machine learning to train on false or incomplete data, undermining the intended outcomes of those efforts. Therefore, quality data becomes an essential key performance indicator for data and analytics for businesses to make more informed decision-making.

Data Literacy Levels

Knowledge of data literacy is crucial for current business goals. Today, more data than ever is available to business users, but if they are unable to comprehend and interpret it, they won’t be able to make use of all of its value-creating potential. Data quality, teamwork, innovation and work process efficiency can increase for organizations that support data literacy. In practice, data literacy entails more gains with fewer drawbacks. Data literacy enables business users to be aware of the data they have access to, how to use it, and more. Understanding how data from various sources might be merged or how it might be enhanced with reliable information from outside sources can be achieved with data literacy. It allows business users to comprehend how geographical context might be used to provide deeper insights and better decision-making. And when responsible individuals are data literate, they can help organizations function better and with more data accuracy. Therefore, implementing data literacy levels as a key performance indicator is extremely important to better understand and track key performances.

Risk

Managing and tracking risk is not a newfound idea. It has long been an organization’s responsibility to be aware of the risks that can put a firm in a vulnerable position. But what’s new is how much more people are becoming aware of the significance of risk management. The regulatory and economic climates have gotten more difficult, and the news is full of stories about what happens to firms when risks aren’t properly handled. The sheer volume of tasks and resources that come with global expansion can make risk management even more difficult. Designing effective risk management methods can be challenging since many dangers are not immediately apparent. However, it’s critical to keep track of how many risks have been found in various parts of your firm. By doing this, you can better understand possible dangers and vulnerabilities. To better guide a firm’s risk management plan, measuring the number of risks that turned into events is imperative. This measure can provide further information about the efficacy of an organization’s risk management process. However, for an organization to smoothly function, tracking risk becomes a crucial performance indicator.

 

Modern organizations place a specific emphasis on data and analytics since they can enhance the results of all kinds of decisions, be it real-time, micro, macro, etc. In addition, data and analytics can potentially uncover opportunities and questions that have not been considered by business leaders before. However, it is crucial to undertake data and analytics KPI to monitor and measure the performance indicators and keep track of data and analytics in businesses to thrive and better achieve organizational goals faster and more effectively.

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TECHNOLOGY

Next-gen chips, Amazon Q, and speedy S3

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AWS re:Invent, which has been taking place from November 27 and runs to December 1, has had its usual plethora of announcements: a total of 21 at time of print.

Perhaps not surprisingly, given the huge potential impact of generative AI – ChatGPT officially turns one year old today – a lot of focus has been on the AI side for AWS’ announcements, including a major partnership inked with NVIDIA across infrastructure, software, and services.

Yet there has been plenty more announced at the Las Vegas jamboree besides. Here, CloudTech rounds up the best of the rest:

Next-generation chips

This was the other major AI-focused announcement at re:Invent: the launch of two new chips, AWS Graviton4 and AWS Trainium2, for training and running AI and machine learning (ML) models, among other customer workloads. Graviton4 shapes up against its predecessor with 30% better compute performance, 50% more cores and 75% more memory bandwidth, while Trainium2 delivers up to four times faster training than before and will be able to be deployed in EC2 UltraClusters of up to 100,000 chips.

The EC2 UltraClusters are designed to ‘deliver the highest performance, most energy efficient AI model training infrastructure in the cloud’, as AWS puts it. With it, customers will be able to train large language models in ‘a fraction of the time’, as well as double energy efficiency.

As ever, AWS offers customers who are already utilising these tools. Databricks, Epic and SAP are among the companies cited as using the new AWS-designed chips.

Zero-ETL integrations

AWS announced new Amazon Aurora PostgreSQL, Amazon DynamoDB, and Amazon Relational Database Services (Amazon RDS) for MySQL integrations with Amazon Redshift, AWS’ cloud data warehouse. The zero-ETL integrations – eliminating the need to build ETL (extract, transform, load) data pipelines – make it easier to connect and analyse transactional data across various relational and non-relational databases in Amazon Redshift.

A simple example of how zero-ETL functions can be seen is in a hypothetical company which stores transactional data – time of transaction, items bought, where the transaction occurred – in a relational database, but use another analytics tool to analyse data in a non-relational database. To connect it all up, companies would previously have to construct ETL data pipelines which are a time and money sink.

The latest integrations “build on AWS’s zero-ETL foundation… so customers can quickly and easily connect all of their data, no matter where it lives,” the company said.

Amazon S3 Express One Zone

AWS announced the general availability of Amazon S3 Express One Zone, a new storage class purpose-built for customers’ most frequently-accessed data. Data access speed is up to 10 times faster and request costs up to 50% lower than standard S3. Companies can also opt to collocate their Amazon S3 Express One Zone data in the same availability zone as their compute resources.  

Companies and partners who are using Amazon S3 Express One Zone include ChaosSearch, Cloudera, and Pinterest.

Amazon Q

A new product, and an interesting pivot, again with generative AI at its core. Amazon Q was announced as a ‘new type of generative AI-powered assistant’ which can be tailored to a customer’s business. “Customers can get fast, relevant answers to pressing questions, generate content, and take actions – all informed by a customer’s information repositories, code, and enterprise systems,” AWS added. The service also can assist companies building on AWS, as well as companies using AWS applications for business intelligence, contact centres, and supply chain management.

Customers cited as early adopters include Accenture, BMW and Wunderkind.

Want to learn more about cybersecurity and the cloud from industry leaders? Check out Cyber Security & Cloud Expo taking place in Amsterdam, California, and London. Explore other upcoming enterprise technology events and webinars powered by TechForge here.

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TECHNOLOGY

HCLTech and Cisco create collaborative hybrid workplaces

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Digital comms specialist Cisco and global tech firm HCLTech have teamed up to launch Meeting-Rooms-as-a-Service (MRaaS).

Available on a subscription model, this solution modernises legacy meeting rooms and enables users to join meetings from any meeting solution provider using Webex devices.

The MRaaS solution helps enterprises simplify the design, implementation and maintenance of integrated meeting rooms, enabling seamless collaboration for their globally distributed hybrid workforces.

Rakshit Ghura, senior VP and Global head of digital workplace services, HCLTech, said: “MRaaS combines our consulting and managed services expertise with Cisco’s proficiency in Webex devices to change the way employees conceptualise, organise and interact in a collaborative environment for a modern hybrid work model.

“The common vision of our partnership is to elevate the collaboration experience at work and drive productivity through modern meeting rooms.”

Alexandra Zagury, VP of partner managed and as-a-Service Sales at Cisco, said: “Our partnership with HCLTech helps our clients transform their offices through cost-effective managed services that support the ongoing evolution of workspaces.

“As we reimagine the modern office, we are making it easier to support collaboration and productivity among workers, whether they are in the office or elsewhere.”

Cisco’s Webex collaboration devices harness the power of artificial intelligence to offer intuitive, seamless collaboration experiences, enabling meeting rooms with smart features such as meeting zones, intelligent people framing, optimised attendee audio and background noise removal, among others.

Want to learn more about cybersecurity and the cloud from industry leaders? Check out Cyber Security & Cloud Expo taking place in Amsterdam, California, and London. Explore other upcoming enterprise technology events and webinars powered by TechForge here.

Tags: Cisco, collaboration, HCLTech, Hybrid, meetings

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TECHNOLOGY

Canonical releases low-touch private cloud MicroCloud

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Canonical has announced the general availability of MicroCloud, a low-touch, open source cloud solution. MicroCloud is part of Canonical’s growing cloud infrastructure portfolio.

It is purpose-built for scalable clusters and edge deployments for all types of enterprises. It is designed with simplicity, security and automation in mind, minimising the time and effort to both deploy and maintain it. Conveniently, enterprise support for MicroCloud is offered as part of Canonical’s Ubuntu Pro subscription, with several support tiers available, and priced per node.

MicroClouds are optimised for repeatable and reliable remote deployments. A single command initiates the orchestration and clustering of various components with minimal involvement by the user, resulting in a fully functional cloud within minutes. This simplified deployment process significantly reduces the barrier to entry, putting a production-grade cloud at everyone’s fingertips.

Juan Manuel Ventura, head of architectures & technologies at Spindox, said: “Cloud computing is not only about technology, it’s the beating heart of any modern industrial transformation, driving agility and innovation. Our mission is to provide our customers with the most effective ways to innovate and bring value; having a complexity-free cloud infrastructure is one important piece of that puzzle. With MicroCloud, the focus shifts away from struggling with cloud operations to solving real business challenges” says

In addition to seamless deployment, MicroCloud prioritises security and ease of maintenance. All MicroCloud components are built with strict confinement for increased security, with over-the-air transactional updates that preserve data and roll back on errors automatically. Upgrades to newer versions are handled automatically and without downtime, with the mechanisms to hold or schedule them as needed.

With this approach, MicroCloud caters to both on-premise clouds but also edge deployments at remote locations, allowing organisations to use the same infrastructure primitives and services wherever they are needed. It is suitable for business-in-branch office locations or industrial use inside a factory, as well as distributed locations where the focus is on replicability and unattended operations.

Cedric Gegout, VP of product at Canonical, said: “As data becomes more distributed, the infrastructure has to follow. Cloud computing is now distributed, spanning across data centres, far and near edge computing appliances. MicroCloud is our answer to that.

“By packaging known infrastructure primitives in a portable and unattended way, we are delivering a simpler, more prescriptive cloud experience that makes zero-ops a reality for many Industries.“

MicroCloud’s lightweight architecture makes it usable on both commodity and high-end hardware, with several ways to further reduce its footprint depending on your workload needs. In addition to the standard Ubuntu Server or Desktop, MicroClouds can be run on Ubuntu Core – a lightweight OS optimised for the edge. With Ubuntu Core, MicroClouds are a perfect solution for far-edge locations with limited computing capabilities. Users can choose to run their workloads using Kubernetes or via system containers. System containers based on LXD behave similarly to traditional VMs but consume fewer resources while providing bare-metal performance.

Coupled with Canonical’s Ubuntu Pro + Support subscription, MicroCloud users can benefit from an enterprise-grade open source cloud solution that is fully supported and with better economics. An Ubuntu Pro subscription offers security maintenance for the broadest collection of open-source software available from a single vendor today. It covers over 30k packages with a consistent security maintenance commitment, and additional features such as kernel livepatch, systems management at scale, certified compliance and hardening profiles enabling easy adoption for enterprises. With per-node pricing and no hidden fees, customers can rest assured that their environment is secure and supported without the expensive price tag typically associated with cloud solutions.

Want to learn more about cybersecurity and the cloud from industry leaders? Check out Cyber Security & Cloud Expo taking place in Amsterdam, California, and London. Explore other upcoming enterprise technology events and webinars powered by TechForge here.

Tags: automation, Canonical, MicroCloud, private cloud

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