A Clear View of What You Can Achieve with Big Data

Big Data – what does it mean?  Ask 5 people, get 5 different answers as it means many different things to different people. I do believe in Big Data and the value that can be achieved as data driven decisions and applications create immense value by utilizing data sources to discover, present and operationalize important business insights.  However, what I am seeing in the marketplace is confusing as every tech company claims to have a solution for analyzing the huge amounts of data businesses create. I challenge this reality … Do these tech companies really know how to use this data?  Or are they jumping into the hype and creating what is now being dubbed “Hadumps” and “Data Swamps”?   

Here is my belief … data on its own is meaningless – period. The value of data is not the data itself – it is what you do with the data.  For data to be useful you first need to know what data you need, otherwise you just get tempted to know everything and that is not a strategy, it’s an act of desperation that is doomed to end in failure. Why go to all the time and trouble collecting data that you won’t or can’t use to deliver business insights? Focus on the things that matter the most otherwise you’ll drown in data. Data is a strategic asset but it’s only valuable if it’s used constructively and appropriately to deliver results.  

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The power of Predictive Analytics

The Power of Predictive Analytics – Universities are turning to new data sources to identify those students who need a nudge toward success.  The promise of predictive analytics in higher education continues to entice--for good reason, it can change student and University outcomes.

In this discussion we will look at why most institutions are struggling to leverage the traditional data points they gather about students - let alone the other data sources needed to ensure actionable insights around student attraction, progression and retention. Second, we will examine why a data mix that works at one school may not be relevant at another, making it almost impossible to buy an effective packaged solution off the shelf – discussion will center on what options are available. Finally, the creepiness factor - Just how intrusive can schools be in tracking the actions of their students?  We will discuss how to protect student level data.

Or find out more at the Association of Collegiate Computing Services of Virginia

Annual Conference: March 16 - 18, 2016

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