Big Data // Big Data Analytics
News
10/31/2012
03:52 PM
Doug Henschen
Doug Henschen
Slideshows
Connect Directly
Google+
LinkedIn
Twitter
RSS
E-Mail
50%
50%
Repost This

Big Data Talent War: 7 Ways To Win

53% of big data-focused companies say analytics experts will be tough to find for the next two years. Here's how IT leaders plan to train, borrow, or steal talent--and what job seekers should know.
Previous
7 of 11
Next


Tip 3: Share Your Existing Analytics Expertise
Large companies and sophisticated companies often have analytics experts on staff. They're usually found in the research and development or finance departments. But some companies are pushing these groups to share the expertise.

Dow Chemical wanted to get more predictive throughout its business, so in 2005 it kicked off an experiment in which two analytics experts from R&D were asked to help out in operational areas. These experts helped the purchasing department develop a freight and logistics cost model to analyze about $2.8 billion in annual truck, rail, ship and airfreight costs worldwide. A supply chain effort led to a model to analyze $4 billion in annual raw materials spending. Both efforts helped Dow save big bucks by accurately predicting costs and enabling procurement people to buy early or wait to buy on better terms, reducing cost by renegotiating contracts.

Early successes at Dow led to a corporate-wide initiative in 2010 through which it has shifted 10 of its Ph.D.-level analytics professionals to work full time with business units to develop predictive and statistical forecasts. Enhanced sales forecasts backed by advanced analytics have reduced forecasting errors. Business units now know by mid-month whether they'll meet monthly performance targets so they can adjust their strategies accordingly. Exchange rate and margin analyses have helped Dow make decisions about where to buy raw materials and how to determine pricing of finished products.

Recommended Reading

Research: 2012 Big Data and Analytics Staffing Survey

Cloudera Debuts Real-Time Hadoop Query

Unlocking Big Government Data: Whose Job Is It?

Hortonworks Cofounder: Hadoop Rivals Can't Touch It

6 Lies About Big Data

Marketers Flooded With Big Data From Mobile

Big Data Talent War: 10 Analytics Job Trends

Big Data Widens Analytic Talent Gap

InformationWeek IT Salary Survey 2012

Previous
7 of 11
Next
Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
Tony Kontzer
50%
50%
Tony Kontzer,
User Rank: Apprentice
1/23/2013 | 8:26:14 PM
re: Big Data Talent War: 7 Ways To Win
I'm shocked to come to this story more than 2 months after it posted and see no comments here. This seems to me a valuable and insightful set of tips that can serve as a launch point for a discussion on how to best fill the data science talent gap. And I'm sure readers would be able to add more tips of their own--and maybe even offer counter-evidence questioning the effectiveness of one of the tips listed here. What say you, readers?

Tony Kontzer
InformationWeek Contributor
InformationWeek Elite 100
InformationWeek Elite 100
Our data shows these innovators using digital technology in two key areas: providing better products and cutting costs. Almost half of them expect to introduce a new IT-led product this year, and 46% are using technology to make business processes more efficient.
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
White Papers
Current Issue
InformationWeek Elite 100 - 2014
Our InformationWeek Elite 100 issue -- our 26th ranking of technology innovators -- shines a spotlight on businesses that are succeeding because of their digital strategies. We take a close at look at the top five companies in this year's ranking and the eight winners of our Business Innovation awards, and offer 20 great ideas that you can use in your company. We also provide a ranked list of our Elite 100 innovators.
Video
Slideshows
Twitter Feed
Audio Interviews
Archived Audio Interviews
GE is a leader in combining connected devices and advanced analytics in pursuit of practical goals like less downtime, lower operating costs, and higher throughput. At GIO Power & Water, CIO Jim Fowler is part of the team exploring how to apply these techniques to some of the world's essential infrastructure, from power plants to water treatment systems. Join us, and bring your questions, as we talk about what's ahead.