CAMBRIDGE, Mass., Feb. 28, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- New research released today by MIT Sloan Management Review reveals that the number of companies reporting a competitive advantage from analytics increased for the first time in four years. Several factors are behind this shift; including, wider dispersion of analytics within companies as well as a stronger focus on specialized, innovative applications that have strategic benefits.
The new report, "Analytics as a Source of Business Innovation," sponsored by SAS, is based on results from a global survey of more than 2,600 business executives and personal interviews with more than a dozen senior managers. It also finds that the companies that are the most innovative with analytics are more likely to share data. Organizations that agree that analytics helps them innovate share data both internally and beyond company borders at much higher levels than other organizations: 80% of these organizations report sharing data internally, compared with 53% of other organizations.
In other findings, more than 60% of all companies surveyed in this year's study say that some organizational tasks once done by humans in their companies have been automated, at least to some extent, because of analytics. "But the immediate benefits from automation have less to do with efficiency gains from eliminating jobs," says David Kiron, executive editor for MIT Sloan Management Review and a co-author of the study. "Instead, automation is liberating managers so that they can focus on more interesting strategic-oriented tasks or simply augmenting their ability to perform their roles."
The study finds that several complementary trends are emerging:
- Businesses that take data seriously organize themselves around data as if it were a valuable organizational asset. The sources of data-driven innovation draw from strong data governance practices and a propensity and ability to share data.
- Data governance turns out to be a key factor in fostering innovation. The study revealed that the organizations that share data internally get more value from their analytics. In addition, the companies that are the most innovative with analytics are more likely to share data beyond their company boundaries. The survey results show that strong data governance practices enable data sharing, which then enables innovation. To be most effective, data governance needs to be embedded in an organization's culture.
- As organizations everywhere increase their use of analytics, differentiation will become increasingly important, and elusive. The research indicates a rise in the number of organizations gaining advantage through analytics. But advantage for one organization in an area means disadvantage for another organization. As a result, organizations may decrease activities where they are not able to gain advantage in favor of activities where they can obtain advantage. The upshot: analytics may help organizations narrow their strategic focus to where their advantage is strongest.
Please visit MIT Sloan Management Review to read the full report.
About MIT Sloan Management Review
A media company based at the MIT Sloan School of Management, MIT Sloan Management Review's mission is to lead the conversation among research scholars, business executives and other thought leaders about advances in management practice that are transforming how people lead and innovate. MIT Sloan Management Review captures for thoughtful managers the creativity, excitement and opportunity generated by rapid organizational, technological and societal change.
SAS is the leader in analytics. Through innovative analytics, business intelligence and data management software and services, SAS helps customers at more than 83,000 sites make better decisions faster. Since 1976, SAS has been giving customers around the world THE POWER TO KNOW®. SAS and all other SAS Institute Inc. product or service names are registered trademarks or trademarks of SAS Institute Inc. in the USA and other countries. ® indicates USA registration. Other brand and product names are trademarks of their respective companies. Copyright © 2017 SAS Institute Inc. All rights reserved.
MIT Sloan Management Review
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