Big payoffs for big data investment, says MBN Recruitment survey

Hiring data scientists can offer big payoffs, a survey by MBN Recruitment Solutions has found.

Wed, 20 Nov 2013 | By DeeDee DokeHiring data scientists can offer big payoffs, a survey by MBN Recruitment Solutions has found.

Unveiled yesterday evening (19 November) by the Glasgow-based data analytics and insight recruiter, MBN’s ‘Big Data Survey 2013’ revealed that 92% of companies that have hired data scientists “have turned data into revenue”, MBN non-executive chairman Paul Forrest told a London audience including decision makers, senior analytics, marketing professionals and Recruiter.

On the other hand, fewer than 30% of companies without dedicated data analysts have managed to successfully convert data into revenue, the survey also found.

The Big Data Survey results point up a number of disconnects between a recognition that big data may be needed and an understanding of which department should own responsibility for it, how it should be used, and priorities for spending information and technology budgets, for example, across cloud computing, mobile and data mining and analysis.

“The issue here is, there’s a lot more work to be done. A lot of businesses are not configured to do it in the right way,” Forrest said.

While 67% of respondents believe that insight and data management is embedded throughout their business operations, this includes the responses of individuals across business functions. However, Forrest said a different picture emerges for the data scientists themselves. “A recurring theme as a challenge… [is that] the guys at the sharp end say it’s being done very poorly,” he said.

Recruiting “the right staff” to “the maximum benefit of big data” is one of the biggest challenges businesses say they have, Forrest said. Most respondents (72%) said that while appropriate tools to deal with big data mark the start of properly managing insight and information, “people are the real key to unlocking the value in promise”, Forrest reported.

He predicted: “The people who will thrive are the ones who are able to put real business relevance into the work they’re doing over the next 12 months.”

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