Symphony Blog

Big Data, Big Companies - But What About You?

Katherine Kilpatrick

Read about the digital enterprise these days and there is one trend that will almost certainly be mentioned - Big Data.

The numbers are pretty staggering. The International Data Corporation (IDC) estimates that the volume of digital data will grow 40% to 50% per year, and notes that 90% of the data we use today has been created in the past two years alone. So of course, that has led many consultants and futurists talk about what this means for corporations - not only how to handle all of this data, but how to use it to their advantage. Retailers can use big data to predict consumer buying patterns more accurately. Call centers can harness big data to manage their workplace more effectively. Etc.

So it’s not surprising that the IDC predicts the market for big data technology and services to grow at an annual rate of 23% with widespread adoption across all industries.

No matter how you put it, if we are overwhelmed now by data, we’re just at the tip of this iceberg.

But digging a bit deeper, what’s most interesting to me is that unstructured data (vs. structured data where relationships are clearly defined) is what’s experiencing much of this growth. You know what is the main form of unstructured data? Email. And who uses email? We all do.

What surprises me is that the dialogue about how to deal with big data doesn’t often address you and me, and how it will affect our daily life at both work and home. I'm already overwhelmed by the volume of email I receive and dissatisfied by my ability to sift through it, flag what is important and search for what I need later on. And if these stats are right, it will only get worse.

We’re at a point where I predict more individuals - myself included - will start to really feel this “data pain” and eschew the status quo, increasingly adopting next generation tools that help us manage, filter and stream this data. We better hurry before we are trapped under a big pile of data!

Share This