The concept of “just in time” is becoming more and more prevalent in today’s world. The need for real-time data analytics is increasing as more businesses look for a way to analyze, understand, and visualize data as soon as it is created or changed in their source systems in order to keep up with the times.
So, what are the commercial advantages of real-time data for analytics and other applications?
Here are the top points.
Fast and Effective Solutions
Even with the latest data science and advanced analytics technologies, much of what we do in the area of data management, BI, and analytics still fits under the old phrase decision support. The software helps you make smarter judgments, and that’s a good description.
Since the pace of business is increasing, smarter decisions need to be made faster. There’s no time to waste waiting for an overnight data management procedure to reconcile the warehouse before delivering standardized reports while even small enterprises are transacting globally online. Working remotely or internationally, business teams want constant access to the best information supplied most often in the form of a dashboard with rapid insights.
First and foremost, real-time data in the organization is about supporting decisions whenever and wherever they need, so that’s the first and most important benefit.
Improve your company’s agility and efficiency
Faster decision-making is easy to mistake for a more agile firm, but this is not always the case. But agility isn’t only about making judgments; it also involves your long-term and short-term business objectives. Quickly deciding on one alternative over another doesn’t help when you need to make decisions of a different kind.
There are numerous business advantages of using real-time data analytics.
Analytics projects can help your company achieve these goals.
Squads, which are small, well-informed, and focused teams, have proven to be a successful business agility strategy in a number of industries. Retailers can, for example, employ squads to focus on specific product categories such as home goods, or other commodities, giving them the ability to make judgments more rapidly and directly than they would have been able to in the past. Teams dedicated to maintenance or safety may exist within a company.
It is possible to respond more swiftly and intelligently to a rapidly changing business environment by empowering squads with a mandate to act immediately. However, if a squad has the necessary data, which must be constantly updated to meet the team’s urgency, this strategy can work. Using real-time data in this way is a fantastic use case.
Identify and resolve operational problems as soon as they arise.
Squads began in the computer industry, but have now spread to retail, telecom, and healthcare industries, all of which are dealing with quickly changing markets and cost concerns.
Using real-time data to improve business operations doesn’t need assembling a team. IoT sensors and video feeds have been used for several years to monitor manufacturing lines for stoppages and backlogs and to conduct predictive maintenance programs. When it comes to reducing downtime, this is an excellent example of the real-time operational improvement in action.
Diverse contexts call for similar tactics. Logistics organizations, for example, might benefit from real-time updates on traffic and weather conditions to better route delivery vehicles. To monitor for situations requiring rapid attention or rerouting, the vehicles’ onboard temperature sensors may deliver real-time notifications.
It is also possible to monitor the balance of orders and product or part availability using real-time analytics to swiftly augment supplies that are running low and to recognize the requirement for short-term contract labor if production, packaging, or shipping is falling behind the target.
Recognize and respond to short-term changes in the market
Fast market changes visibly affect some industries, such as stock trading. A company’s ability to function effectively is directly correlated to the availability of current data.
Airlines and hotel chains, for example, adjust pricing and availability in response to quickly changing factors such as the state of the economy, the weather, and the price of crude oil. In today’s world of online shopping, merchants must adapt fast to shifting demand, costs, and client preferences.
All of these cases benefit greatly from real-time data. If your inventory and margins allow you to take a deep breath and ride out some interruptions, you can go more slowly. However, today’s enterprises don’t have that luxury. Instead, we’ve had to get much better at leveraging data in order to keep an eye on our markets faster and more efficiently.
Make your online marketing efforts more personalized for your customers.
Using real-time data in online retail is a great example of this. Customers who were loyal to a brick-and-mortar store could count on the personnel to recognize, greet, and assist them. Bots that can access your internet activity in real-time are becoming more commonplace. It may not personally greet you, but it will make sure that the homepage, special offers, and recommendations reflect the information it has gleaned about you from your previous sessions.
The computerized personalization and attention to detail can be a touch too “creepy” for some people. According to the truth of the matter, a wide range of businesses employ real-time technology in order to tailor their websites and online advertising to specific customers without their knowledge.
Provide customers with the latest information to enhance their experience.
Your experience with customer care at any of your utility companies, cable providers, mobile network operators, or airlines should be better than it was even a few years ago. Why? All of these businesses, as well as a slew of others, have made significant investments in their call centers’ ability to integrate real-time data.
It should be possible for call center agents to read information like a local outage, broken equipment, an unexpectedly large bill, or a canceled trip while they’re on the phone with a customer. This kind of real-time application-driven knowledge has increasingly been the norm.
Capturing and storing data in real-time
It’s tough to sum all the steps needed in real-time data handling in a single paragraph. Streaming and micro-batching are two alternative ways to data collection and management that are worth mentioning.
Batch loading is common in traditional data warehouses and operational databases, which use a data set to answer analytical queries. There is a beginning and an end to every batch of work. I’ve seen batch ETL operations that lasted for 12 hours, loading a data warehouse with millions of records; this is the most typical type of data integration. It is always a relief to see such a large batch come to a satisfactory conclusion.
It’s possible to collect near-real-time performance statistics using micro-batches, which can analyze just one record at a time. Micro-batches can be processed into and out of the analytics system quickly if the data management environment can handle it, approximating real-time data at the source. Traditional data integration strategies such as transaction management in the event of a failure should still apply to micro-batches, as they still have a beginning and an end.