A recent study found that, on average, 60% of analytics tasks that business users want to perform require IT or data professional support. This reality has put pressure on firms to find better solutions to extend the accessibility and usability of analytics tools to business users.
The solution may lie in augmented analytics. With AI and machine learning infused in analytics workflows, augmented analytics can uncover insights faster, understand root causes, and present what is likely to happen in the future, all while reducing human bias. And over 50% of business decision makers believe augmented analytics could help fill knowledge gaps for inexperienced users.
Take this 3- to 5-minute assessment of your current analytics practices to learn how prepared your company is to leverage the capabilities of augmented analytics and to receive recommendations to drive greater accessibility of analytics and data insights for your organization.
1. How well does the following statement describe your company’s current analytics/BI practices?
Analytics drives most of our business decisions.
2. How well does the following statement describe your company’s current analytics/BI practices?
Analytics insights influence/affect tangible business outcomes.
3. How well does the following statement describe your company’s current analytics/BI practices?
There is a strong top-down mandate by senior leadership (including the budget holders) to build and continuously improve analytics infrastructure and applications.
4. How well does the following statement describe your company’s current analytics/BI practices?
Analytics are applied separately in each department, business unit, and/or geography rather than holistically across the entire enterprise.
5. How well does the following statement describe your company’s current analytics/BI practices?
We run well-functioning data and analytics governance processes.
6. Does your company have a Chief Data Officer (CDO) and/or Chief Analytics Officer (CAO), and where do they report to?
7. What best describes your company’s current analytical data infrastructure?
8. To what extent does your company have the following analytics capabilities? (Select one per row.)
9. In what ways is your organization working to make analytics more accessible to nondata professionals? (Select all that apply.)
Your overall analytics rating is: Traditional Modern Augmented
Your responses classify your company as lagging regarding your current analytics practices, like 39% of the firms whose respondents we surveyed. While 32% of the peers/competitors with similar classifications report 10% or more year-over-year growth, 78% of the companies with more sophisticated, augmented analytics practices report 10% growth or higher. This represents a huge opportunity for you to take the right steps now for enabling application of analytics across your organization through augmented analytics to drive greater revenue growth, margins, and customer and employee satisfaction.
- From a strategy perspective, start educating budget holders about the tangible benefits of analytics; start communicating analytics vision and making relevant tactical investments.
- From a process perspective, make the case for analytics governance — a process that links analytics to tangible business outcomes; deploy an analytics governance proof of concept.
- From a people perspective, assign a C-level non-IT executive as the leader/champion of analytics; deploy an analytics center-of-excellence proof of concept.
- From a data perspective, start consolidating (physically or virtually) disparate data marts into enterprise data fabric; introduce a data catalog proof of concept.
- From a technology perspective, roll out augmented analytics platform and applications as a proof of concept.
Your responses classify your company’s analytics practices as modern, meaning you’ve taken steps to make analytics more accessible across the business but are still working to streamline those efforts. Sixty-three percent of the peers/competitors with the same classification report 10% or more year-over-year growth, whereas 78% of companies with more sophisticated, augmented analytics practices report 10% growth or higher. Although you are making progress in enabling greater use of analytics insights across your organization (especially for LoB users), there are organizational and technical challenges that you can address to optimize your capabilities.
- From a strategy perspective, leverage tactical wins and successes to make the case for making analytics investments part of enterprise strategy; start investing in analytics strategically.
- From a process perspective, make analytics governance a key role for an analytics center of excellence (CoE); deploy analytics governance across the enterprise.
- From a people perspective, roll out an analytics CoE across the enterprise; start exposing non-IT pros to augmented analytics technologies and training them to be citizen data scientists.
- From a data perspective, continue building out enterprise data fabric (data warehouse, data catalog); roll out a data lake proof of concept.
- From a technology perspective, get buy-in from the analytics leader/champion on the value of augmented analytics; start reducing dependency on data science professionals by rolling out an augmented analytics platform and applications across the enterprise.
Your responses classify your company as augmented, or advanced, in its use of analytics, like 24% of the firms we surveyed. Most key components of augmented analytics — organization, processes, and technology — are already in place. Business end users can deliver actionable insights and tangible business outcomes in a measured manner and consistently across the entire organization. While your organization is already using many of the capabilities that augmented analytics espouses, continue leveraging analytics insights to drive improvements across your organization.
- From a strategy perspective, make analytics a key part of your digital transformation journey; continue leveraging analytics for competitive advantage and customer obsession.
- From a process perspective, deploy hub-and-spoke (enterprise — policies and governance; business functions — execution) analytics governance; use analytics governance and continuous learning and improvement to ensure continued tangible benefits.
- From a people perspective, infuse analytics pros/citizen data scientists in all business functions; deploy a hub- (enterprise) and-spoke (business functions) analytics org structure.
- From a data perspective, leverage actionable insights across all your enterprise data fabric investments: data exploration discovery and mining from data lake, and analytics from data warehouse — all managed from an enterprise data catalog.
- From a technology perspective, empower all enterprise business users with augmented analytics platforms, only relying on professional data scientists for most mission-critical and complex analytics, or where proprietary algorithms are required.
Next Steps From SAP
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For a deeper look, read the April 2020 Forrester Opportunity Snapshot, “Enabling Data-Driven Decisions Through Augmented Analytics,” commissioned by SAP. This study reveals how business leaders whose companies implemented augmented analytics reported greater confidence in decision making, an increase in analytics efficiency, and an improvement in analytics effectiveness.
SAP can help you accelerate the evolution of your analytics practices. To learn more, visit www.sap.com/analytics, or check out this brief demo on the augmented analytics capabilities in SAP Analytics Cloud.
Methodology, Disclaimers and Disclosures
In this study, Forrester interviewed 412 business and IT decision makers responsible for analytics and business intelligence strategies and investments. Questions provided to the participants asked about their firms’ approaches to analytics, challenges experienced, and desired outcomes. Respondents surveyed were from companies in the US, Canada, Brazil, the UK, France, Germany, Japan, and China and that had employee counts of 500 or more. The study was completed in February 2020.
Although great care has been taken to ensure the accuracy and completeness of this assessment, SAP and Forrester are unable to accept any legal responsibility for any actions taken on the basis of the information contained herein. The tool is provided “as is,” and Forrester and SAP make no warranties of any kind. Forrester does not endorse SAP or its offerings.
This interactive tool is commissioned by SAP and delivered by Forrester Consulting.