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Our devices are talking… but are we listening?

Jeremy Sim, Director of Industry Solutions, Qlik APAC | Dec. 14, 2016
Recent research from Forrester shows that, although more than half of companies making IoT devices are collecting this data, only a third are making use of it.

Unfortunately, the barrier comes down to the analysis process. Analysing data can be an overwhelming prospect at the best of times - and that's just when it's data which relates to your company. We've already shown how much data smart devices are producing, but where do you start on analysing it? If companies are collecting all that data, they need to be data-driven in order to turn it into insights - and that means finding a way to make it as accessible, visual and understandable to as many people as possible, whether in a business context or otherwise.

The key to seeing the whole story in IoT data, is to approach it with an open mind, rather than searching for a specific answer. It needs to be explored and interacted with for hidden insights and gems that you might not have thought about looking for - and that's going to require investment and skill. 

That said, it's an investment that needs to be made. Companies cannot afford to neglect the massive opportunity for getting their approach to data analysis around IoT devices right. There are business platforms out there that have been built to support the analysis of large amounts of data in an easy-to-understand, visual way, whether the user has experience in the field of data analysis or not.

While some investment is required upfront, organisations embracing IoT should not be afraid to 'fail-fast', which means thinking small initially, experimenting and analysing in order to learn what works as efficiently as possible. In addition, while the skill sets of data scientists are indeed important, especially at the operations layer and in the long term, we encourage organisations to harness existing talent in the first instance to gain valuable insight immediately.

Ultimately, however, to make the most of IoT, users will have to go on exploratory journeys for insights, where they can collaborate and experiment with data analysis with partners outside their organisation - combining a number of internal and external data sets for 'out of the box' insights on human (or indeed mouse) behaviours.  

The future is here, and those companies that embrace it now and make the data they have accessible and understandable will be the ones turning data into gold dust. With the right attitude and investment in analysing IoT data, they're in the best position to understand what makes us tick and either make internal business changes for the better or even turn data into revenue by selling insights on. 


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