Top 5 Data Trends in 2021

Big Data has been a buzz word for several years, with the last couple of years concentrating on how to harness the power of big data. With the 4th Industrial Revolution driving technology change, as well as the convergence of technologies, data has shifted from being accessible to a select few to becoming a democratised asset. Every layer within an organisation needs access to enable data driven decision making resulting in increased organizational agility, responsiveness, and resilience.

For 2021, the democratisation of data is expected to gain momentum but needs to be supported to make it more accessible, easier and quicker to use, and meaningful.

Top 5 Data Trends in 2021

Convergence of Data

Many organizations have historical systems that have had considerable investment over the years but do not necessarily integrate services like predictive analytics, blending data, cloud services, AI, data governance and more. The true winners in 2021 will be the ones that can converge the old and the new and enable sharing and convergence of data across platforms.

AI Data Experiences Are the New Black

Traditionally, your workforce has had access to dashboards with low flexibility across different roles and functions within the organization. With the advent of AI individuals will be able to access relevant information easily and quickly with an AI data experience that will intuitively customize the end user experience to enable decision making, for that individual, for that specific role.

Data Driven Decision Making

With the challenges of Covid-19, the need for real-time analytics and predictive analytics grew exponentially in 2020. This enabled leading organizations to make decisions based on almost instantaneous access to data with simulations that enabled data-led decision making.

In 2021, we expect this to be taken one step further with AI recommending optimal outcomes based on predictive analytics scenarios. This is known as prescriptive analytics

Data Strategy will Rise to C-Suite Responsibility

With data being viewed as a strategic asset, the leader that delivers this end-to-end data experience will increasingly be in the spotlight and in demand.  It is predicted that due to the strategic nature of this business pillar, that data strategy and management will move within the Chief Financial Officer’s (CFO’s) portfolio of responsibility with the role evolving into that of a Chief Value Officer. Positions such as Chief Information Officer (CIO) and Chief Data Officer (CDO) will become more strategic and central to business delivery, which means that these roles will need to expand their competency to integrate business and data capabilities to deliver relevant value to the organization.

Growth of the Citizen Data Scientist

With the democratization of data and analytics through converged solutions, the Citizen Data Scientist will be the cornerstone of every function and layer within an organization.  Data specialists will no longer be needed to develop scenarios, with long lead times and project management.  The right solutions will allow the Citizen Data Scientist to flourish and grow to enable responsive and proactive data driven decision making throughout the organization.