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5 factors driving the growth of data analytics in India

Suvro Banerjee
17th Dec 2016
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With data fast emerging as the new gold for businesses around the world, the big data analytics industry in India is set to witness an exponential growth. According to the National Association of Software and Services Companies (NASSCOM), the sector is expected to be worth $16 billion by 2025. This marks an eight-fold growth for the industry, which is currently worth $2 billion. But what has been driving such rapid rise in demand for the data analytics industry?

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Image Credit: Shutterstock

Increase in data generation at an individual level

The growth of smartphone penetration in India has directly resulted in a massive increase in the amount of data being generated. This number is only set to grow further as high-speed internet services are becoming more accessible and easily affordable in both urban and rural areas. Globalisation, economic growth, and the availability of easy-to-use, low-cost smartphones are also playing a major role in driving greater data generation in the country. According to a study conducted by BlueOcean Marketing Intelligence, there are 383 million smartphone users and 243 million internet users in India at present. This makes every click or touch by a consumer an important information data point that can be processed to reveal user behaviour.

Increase in data generation at the level of organisations

Driven chiefly by the current ease of data capturing, the creation of data by corporate businesses is also witnessing an exponential boom. Companies now have in-house teams of scientists and analysts to record and process the firm’s internal data, as well as the external data gained through surveys and other data acquisition channels. Big data projects around the globe have also received tremendously favourable response from venture capital firms.

Digitisation of transaction is another factor that has driven the growth of corporate data. Compression technologies and virtualisation are enabling companies to do more with their technological assets. It can be concluded that big data is no longer the sole domain of massive businesses like retail chains and financial institutions. The growth of e-commerce as well as the prevalence of social media, online blogs, and e-mail exchanges has led to data coming in from multiple sources, and enterprises are looking for solutions that can extract valuable information from this data. Cloud computing has also resulted in a manifold rise in the amount of data generated.

Compelling business need to maintain competitive edge

The deployment of analytics is critical to businesses for developing new competitive strategies, and provide differentiated services. From credit firms using sophisticated processes to protect millions of accounts from frauds to banks segmenting customers on the basis of credit usage and risk profiles, the benefits of analytics are critical for survival in the marketplace. Dominant e-commerce portals have been managing massive volumes of operational data every day, regulating supply chains and evaluating delivery plans. Similarly, service industries such as hospitality, airlines, car rentals, etc., are able to maximise their revenue by building better business models because data analysis allows the companies to pre-emptively compare availability and pricing with capacity and inventory.

The tools for analysis are getting better

The increasing efficiency of tools and products specialising in data processing is a major reason behind the growth of business analytics. Tasks, which earlier required immense expertise and skills, can now be accomplished easily because of the rapid development of artificial intelligence and deep-learning algorithms. An assortment of analytical software is currently available, ranging from simple statistical tools in spreadsheets and statistical software packages.

Due to exponential growth of data volumes and analytical complexity, in-database analytics tools are gaining increasing adoption. Companies are also beginning to develop in-house tools designed for specific data analysis purposes. Another widely used tool for analysis, Hadoop enables one to store any kind of data – be it structured or unstructured – and run applications on clusters of commodity hardware. In fact, the open-source framework allows for massive storage and processing power with the additional ability to virtually handle infinite concurrent tasks. Other benefits of using Hadoop are its low-cost functioning, protection against hardware failure, absence of the need to pre-process data before storage, and the ease with which scalability can be achieved.

Increased awareness of the process of data analysis

In the present global scenario, there are several companies across industries adopting data analytics to optimise their functioning. Healthcare in the United States and the public sector in Europe are particularly favourable towards storing and processing big data for better management. This preference for big data analytics by their counterparts in more developed economies is inspiring companies in India to invest in the same. India is currently among the top 10 big data analytics markets in the world, according to a research by the Everest Group, and holds 35 to 50 percent of the global analytics services market. Driven by the increased demand for cloud-based and predictive analytics solutions by industries such as telecom, healthcare, and BFSI, India is now home to emerging service units which have assimilated specialised tasks that were traditionally part of a large policy-making unit in workplaces. The network created between different organisations is also allowing them to learn from each other’s mistakes and successes in real-time, as the adoption and maturity of data analysis increases every day.

As India’s economy becomes increasingly global, Indian organisations start to provide world-class services and products, analytics will continue to become an integral part of corporate strategy.

(Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of YourStory.)

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