Everyone knows that the world has changed a lot in recent years. Now, with less than 10 months until 2020, the Cloud is the reality, AI is everywhere, and Voice will undoubtedly be the next interface for analytics.
And Now What?
Technologists involved in data analytics, AI and cloud technology have seen team and priorities transform drastically in the last 10 years. 10 years ago, people reveled in the joy of what was then called the self-service wave: business departments were buying individual analysis tools that enabled them to go around their I.T. departments. Analysts in Marketing and Sales would download troves of data to their desktop and create beautiful visualizations.
10 years later, self-service is showing its limits. Now, companies are getting fined for mishandling data and bad governance in general. In 2018 alone, the Information Commissioners Office (ICO) issued fines in excess of $3M to companies like Uber, Equifax, Facebook, and others.
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We started this decade delighted about sharing data and insights. Were ending it realizing that, without strong governance, self-service can be a nightmare.
So, what should you do over the next 10 months to set up your team for success over the next 10 years? Here are 3 trends to consider:
#1 Trend: Your Data is a Corporate Asset
Enterprise leaders have now internalized the unintended consequences of self-serving. GDPR helped last year. New regulations this year will put this in focus everywhere else in the world.
Take a look at TDWIs latest report on enterprise priorities when it comes to AI, BI, and Data. When asked: What is the investment priority for acquiring new technologies to improve the following BI and analytics activities? 82% of respondents said that CENTRALLY MANAGED Business Analytics was a top priority.
#2 Trend: Augmented Analytics is a BIG Deal
If you work in technology, your ears must be burning every time you hear the terms Artificial Intelligence or Machine Learning. These days, it feels like every company is doing A.I.
Don't be fooled though. For the companies which succeed with A.I., the majority of them have focused on the application of A.I. (as opposed to just the technology itself). They implement A.I. for application-specific workflows or use A.I. for key analytical use cases (A.I. for data enrichment or dashboard creation for example).
If you haven't paid attention to this trend, you should. According to Gartner's most recent predictions, in 2019, Augmented will be everywhere.
#3 Trend: Voice as the Next Interface
Back in 2011, Microsoft introduced a very successful campaign for the Xbox gaming console and it's Kinect technology. Kinect combined voice and face recognition with a motion sensor and a depth camera which could see player movements and let them control the game console with their body.
The tagline was:You Are The Controller. The campaign referred to the fact that, ultimately, gamers would no longer need to use a traditional controller at all. Rather, they would use the camera powered Kinect technology to interact with the gaming console.
This exact trend is happening in the Data Analytics world now. The old world of desktop-centric analytics has shown its limits. The adoption of analytics in the average enterprise is still too low, and the best way to increase it is to broaden access, beyond the desktop to a new type of interface.
That new interface is your voice. We know Voice works. Billions of people talk to Siri, Alexa or Google every day and the expectation for voice-driven interfaces is growing faster than we can say it: Juniper Research reported recently that the use of smart assistants will grow 1,000% in the next 5 years.
Up until now, they have been asking other humans for answers. Increasingly, they will ask machines. And the quality of your data and the models powering these machines will drive the quality of the answers.