Data & Analytics

Veronika Belokhvostova, head of Global Business Analytics at PayPal.

Mining Data at PayPal to Guide Business Strategy

“The kind of people we hire want to know that their work is not gathering dust on some shelf, but has a real impact on the company,” says Veronika Belokhvostova, head of Global Business Analytics at PayPal. And indeed, business analysts there are collaborating with business leaders to answer the “what should we do next?” question.

Image courtesy of Flickr user igormazic.
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Data Analytics and the Information Transfer Gap

Most companies seem to be better at collecting data than using what they collect to create value. As companies increase the amount and variety of data they collect, the gap between data collection and insight generation may increase. This blogpost highlights several hurdles that need to be overcome to bridge this gap.

Image courtesy of Match.com.

Innovating With Analytics

A data and analytics survey conducted by MIT Sloan Management Review in partnership with SAS Institute Inc. found a strong correlation between the value companies say they generate using analytics and the amount of data they use. The creators of the survey identified five levels of analytics sophistication, with those at Level 5 being most sophisticated and innovative. These analytical innovators in Level 5 had several defining traits. This article explores those traits.

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The Digital You at Work: What to Consider

Algorithms that measure influence and motivation are part of a new group of analytic tools — from pre-employment analytics to on-the-job assessments — that can help a company determine an employee’s value throughout her career.

Jeanne Ross, director of the MIT Sloan Center for Information Systems Research

Do You Need a Data Dictator?

Some companies have a counting problem when it comes to data. Revenues, customers and leads can be counted the same way by all managers…or not. Director of MIT’s Center for Information System Research discusses the growing interest in data analytics and how one company that was in the red dealt with business unit heads all of whom were reporting profits.

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The 2012 Olympic Games: Will Data Save the Day?

Data analysis is being used during the Olympic Games for everything from ensuring a smooth flow of commuter traffic to generating a multi-colored light show on the London Eye each night based on Twitter feed sentiments.

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Wimbledon, Big Data and Business Intuition

IBM SecondSight is being used at Wimbledon to track how players move on the court. Measuring and tracking balls and players in any dimension with real time analytics, its goal is to add a new dimension to understanding the science of tennis.

Image courtesy of Flickr user KJGarbutt.
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Finding Value in the Information Explosion

Today’s companies process more than 60 terabytes of information annually, about 1,000 times more than a decade ago. But how well are companies managing the data and capitalizing on the opportunities it presents?

To answer these questions, seven IT research centers studied data-related activities at 26 corporations and large nonprofit organizations. The research shows that while the IT unit is competent at storing and protecting data, it cannot make decisions that turn data into business value.

“Eye” by artist Tony Tasset in Laumeier Sculpture Park, St. Louis, MO. Image courtesy of Flickr user warmestregards.
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How Much Data is Too Much Data To Mine?

Do you know how much data is being collected about you at any given time by any given organization? Concerns about privacy in the new era of big data are making the rounds at many companies and being discussed by universities, governments and global institutions. This blogpost discusses some of the major privacy concerns about big data, how to address them and has a special focus on Equifax, the credit company that has 800 billion records with details on 500 million consumers and 81 million businesses in 17 countries.

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The Storage and Transfer Challenges of Big Data

A lot of the talk about analytics focuses on its potential to provide huge insights to company managers. But analyst Simon Robinson of 451 Research says that on the more basic level, the global conversation is about big data’s more pedestrian aspects: how do you store it, and how do you transmit it?

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Image courtesy of Flickr user Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com.
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The Emergence of the Extra-Rational Manager

Big Data is often associated with big numbers, but less often with a big picture. The basic question — How can increasing the quantity, velocity and variety of captured data really impact how people manage? — can go unanswered. But in a MIT Sloan Executive Education course Big Data: Making Complex Things Simpler, MIT professors Erik Brynjolfsson and Alex Pentland offer that big picture view of the economic, societal and managerial transformations that they see on the horizon.

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Big Data Lessons at MIT

David Kiron, executive editor of MIT SMR‘s Innovation Hubs, attended “Big Data: Making Complex Things Simpler,” a two-day seminar taught by MIT’s Erik Brynjolfsson and Sandy Pentland. Kiron shares insights from the course, including how cheap flows of data enable faster experimentation and the privacy implications of Big Data.

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