Big Data – Client’s Value Creation and the Consultant’s Charm


February 25, 2013 by ravipalaparthy

By Ravi Palaparthy, MSc in Management Consulting 3 student

According to recent data analytics study at IBM “One in three business leaders frequently make decisions without the information they need and half don’t have access to the information they need to do their jobs”. The advent of Big Data in the recent past is enabling Consultants and business leaders address this business need.

“Big Data is the frontier of a firm’s ability to store, process and access all of the data it needs to operate, make decisions, reduce risks and serve customers”[1].

The reach of Big Data is extrapolated into seemingly physical and intuitive fields like fossil hunting by collecting geologic data. Some other intricate areas of Big Data applications are improving soldier’s efficiency, fighting cancer etc. The fact that Big Data is used in fields like fossil hunting tells us the enormous amount of information available in any field that interests us. Big data need not be limited to particular fields but can be tailored to discover information according to the needs of a particular organization. For example the IT operations in any organization deal with monitoring the productivity through pretty charts and graphs. The increasing use of Big Data “analytics” in this arena allowed big IT companies to reach the 5 nines (99.999%) of availability of IT systems. The 5 nines of availability is a system downtime of 26 secs per month. The best advantage of Big Data observed in recent times is in marketing by understanding a customer’s trend and suggesting him\her products. Thus a consultant working to improve the market for a client in FMCG (Fast Moving Consumer Goods) has a plethora of information to work on his discovery phase. He can make informed decisions from the data analytics and suggest them for clients even more quickly than the traditional practices.

By and large the primary tasks of a management consultant are to discover (i.e. gather information) and to analyze the information and thus plan an action. The following are a few ways in which Big Data can create value and serve as a Consultant’s charm:

Big Data allows a superior segregation of customers and hence offer clear target markets for products and services. Amazon and other leading service providers for handling Big Data quote that the availability of digital data helps consultants manage information precisely. Charting new developments in fast evolving technical and service oriented sectors is much easier through digging Big Data.

The future of social media marketing and developing new trends for nextgen products lies heavily with the utilization of statistics and data retrieved from customers. The discovery and the analyzing stages in a consultant cycle would be even faster with the emergence of Big Data globally. This is great news not just for consultants but for clients as well. On one hand the consultants work on shorter assignments. On the other hand the clients get to hire the consultants for lesser hours.

[1] Forrester Definition for Big Data


2 thoughts on “Big Data – Client’s Value Creation and the Consultant’s Charm

  1. Thanks Ravi for this nice article, it gives us a good understanding of Big Data and the future trends. I understand that big data is the next thing but how can a consultant or business analyst get experience dealing with this type of data. Is there any certification?

    • Hello Youssouf, I am glad you liked the blog. There are various applications to analyze Big Data. These are Big Data analytics tools like cognos (IBM), SAS, SPSS, R analytics etc. There are plenty of tools. The best way is to pick one of these tools or register on Coursera for Big Data Analytics (5-8 Weeks) and it gives a broad understanding about Big Data from a Business Consultant’s point of view

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