Introduction and Research Context
Globalization is one of the trends that have facilitated a revolution in how various firms handle information. Big data is now an element of strategic planning in many firms due to its significance. The importance of vast amounts of information includes analyzing consumer behavior and making business decisions. The 21st century has seen many firms making their plans after studying the data available in the market. Consumers and the market trends inform how this information will be used to leverage competition while maximizing on their profits. In her work, Lukic (2017) notes that organizations can handle vast volumes of data to create chances and sustain their relevance in the industry. She notes that the effective management of data allows firms to improve their effectiveness.
Given that big data is unstructured and complex, firms have to innovate ways to ensure that their data is set in a structured way. Proper structures allow the information to be meaningful. Any data obtained on a real-time basis must be utilized immediately since it is what dictates the needs of the consumers at a particular moment. Hence, entities must arrange and interpret data in the form of texts, images, videos and audios (Lukic, 2017). Such information facilitates planning in an organization, and it enables it to adjust to the trends in the market it is operating. Using this data, a business can tell what consumers want, and this can help in quality service delivery. The work below seeks to analyze the impacts of vast volumes of data on companies and how information technology is essential in leveraging the same with the opportunities of a firm.
The objectives of this research include:
- To determine how big data influences the performance of companies.
- To establish how information technology can be utilized to create and maintain a competitive advantage.
Big data presents the challenge of storage and identification of which data is integral to a firm. Its complexity requires companies to come up with ways to make the data important. The volumes, velocity and variety of information define how big the data is as well as its management (Lukic, 2017). Companies and their clients create vast amounts of information each day, and this determines data usage and storage. Velocity, on the other hand, refers to how fast the data is generated and utilized by the consumers and the companies. The ability of a firm to capture the information accurately determines how useful it will be in the present as well as in the future. Variety indicates the different ways in which data can be obtained. In the current global set up, most firms rely on social networking sites to acquire data. However, companies can achieve the same through televisions, credit cards and hospital records (Lukic, 2017). In essence, organizations have to be aware of their environment to acquire and make use of data.
Organizations that understand their data after utilizing the three Vs (Variety, velocity and volume) automatically deliver the right products and services to their clients. These tools ensure that companies handle customer complaints well. Additionally, it allows the entities to improve the quality of their products as well as services using the data as a guiding tool. Monitoring the business using the tools of big data ensures that the companies can respond to the needs of their clients on a timely basis and it reduces the chances of relying on inaccurate data. It creates an opportunity for companies to develop new modes of conducting their activities after understanding the behavior of their clientele. Leveraging the information acquired with the business opportunities available ensures that a company stays in business without redundant practices (Ghasemaghaei, Hassanein & Turel, 2015). It also facilitates growth since a firm understands its market and what the consumers, as well as regulators, expect.
Some of the available big data technologies that we can use include MapReduce, Hadoop and Storm which are useful due to their ability to handle real-time data. Additionally, these technologies are independent, and they handle large volumes of information without glitches. For the data obtained to make sense, visualization is critical since it helps in monitoring the progress and give conclusions based on what is visible. Some of the visualization methods that are valid include tag cloud, heatmaps, motion charts and clustergram (Lukic, 2017). The models are based on graphs and digital charts. Motion charts show data in dual dimensional graphs to enable comparisons. Heatmaps, on the other hand, rely on the categories provided to deliver conclusive results. Information may be based on the brand and the location of the entity (Lukic, 2017). Clustergrams may be utilized in institutions such as hospitals to identify how various data tools relate to the elements that are under analysis. For example, the relationship between the return rate of patients and how their data is stored can be analyzed through the clustergrams. The Tag cloud is a tool that monitors the frequency of how particular phrases are used within an organization. It can be used to manage data while monitoring client and employee satisfaction.
Companies can create a competitive advantage by using the tools mentioned in the previous paragraph. Utilizing these methods of studying data can help a company understand its market as well as its consumers. Additionally, significant volumes of information can help in pointing out the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and strengths of a company. However, establishing the relevance of each tool requires the management to understand what suits their employees and clients for them to maintain their objectivity. The resources, therefore, have to durable and transparent with an element of competitive superiority (Ghasemaghaei, Hassanein & Turel, 2015). These features will give the tools for managing the big data an opportunity to create value and maintain the relevance of the organization.
Entities can also use big data to identify the capabilities of their employees as opposed to primarily focusing on their clients. Vast amounts of information can be used by firms to determine the unmet job demands within the companies. Adopting a research model that is linked to performance will assess employee productivity and value to the entity. Marketing capitalizing agility can be evaluated through the constant modification of a product or a service. The ability of the employees to make decisions based on the response of the adjusted products is one of the ways of proving how big data can impact a company. The tools adopted during marketing expose the abilities and talents of the employees. They also show the areas in which employees perform well and the company can use this as a specialization strategy.
Information technology is useful in integrating all forms of data and their collection methods for the utility of a business. Programming, data searches, file systems, databases and business intelligence are some of the segments that assist in the application of big data technologies. Utilizing programming languages using the available tools can help a business to structure its work using accurate algorithms. For the data to make sense and for the techniques to be effective, companies must find a connection between the market variables through the association rule. Identifying how the information they obtain relates to the clients and the entity is integral in making decisions. Information technology allows the classification of this data in clusters that make sense. This approach helps entities quantify their clients according to their needs and wants (Lukic, 2017). Additionally, structuring big data using the available tools helps the entity and the consumers to adjust to the various market trends without creating inconsistencies. Therefore, big data can help institutions manage their operations according to the varying demands of their clientele.
Ghasemaghaei, Hassanein & Turel postulate that utilizing analytics associated with big data allow the company to boost its performance. The ability of a company to leverage the information it obtains helps it in creating value for its products and services. Additionally, the company can use big data as a platform to integrate its resources with tools that provide a competitive advantage (Ghasemaghaei, Hassanein & Turel, 2015). In this research, the agility and ability of firms to adapt to the various trends determine if the models of big data will work. Creating value in the resources of business will allow it to maximize its utility. Achieving this requires establishing the right tool to develop data sustainability. Fitting data according to its usability enables the firm to cut on costs that may affect its ability to create new products for their current and potential consumers. It also assists in involving employees with the organizational operations, and this helps in sticking to the organizational goals.
According to Luna et al, the data created between 2012 and 2014 was more than that generated in the entire existence of man. The inability to manage such huge volumes results to loss of valuable information and it exposes some companies to security risks. Intense amounts of data necessitate a change in how information is handled. Therefore, information technology is instrumental in leveraging the continuous increase of data in various online spaces (Luna et al, 2014). In the health sector, for example, information technology can be used to understand multiple changes in patients. It creates a platform to generate fresh knowledge of diseases and symptoms in various patients. Additionally, big data allows doctors to share their experience with patients and other members of the clinical support teams (Luna et al, 2014). Therefore, hospitals can use information technology to understand their patients depending on their symptoms and available medical records.
Interoperability of data with other systems is vital to the success of this project. Determining how big data can be put into fragments to ensure that clinicians and other users understand the relationship between the information sets is one of the most integral stages of this project (Luna et al, 2014). However, handling data in the health sector requires an information technology system that will not negate the privacy of the patients. Therefore, action plans should be set to ensure that there is no loss of data or exposure of critical information to unauthorized users. The success of any system that relies on information technology relies on staff competence and the availability of updated and secure software systems.
Understanding the nature of the problem requires a comprehensive analysis of the issues at hand. Embracing the importance of handling big data using information technology tools gives institutions the impetus to develop techniques to create value from the intel they obtain about their clients. Identifying the correct methods to collect information gives it credibility, and it is a way of sustaining research. Establishing truths about a problem needs various approaches to ensure the creation of a concrete solution. The nature of this study requires qualitative and quantitative research methods. Quantitative techniques rely on numerical values while qualitative approaches need accurate descriptions of the issues in question. Research models guide the hypothesis and conclusions made. The research objectives of this proposal will be instrumental in informing the method.
Analyzing the relevance of big data requires quantitative techniques that allow the measurement of succ...
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