As we are flooded by data we have the opportunity to invest in the tools, people, and processes to perform the appropriate strategic analysis required to deliver better products and services and new levels of brand loyalty.  In our complex and competitive business world, insights from data can be utilized to fundamentally transform our business, driving new levels of growth and enabling organizations to transform established business markets.  Today, March 10, 2015, we are releasing the publication of a global thought leadership report – Big and Fast Data:  The Rise of Insight Driven Business.  
It wasn’t all that long ago that data was managed through conventional lifecycle management processes (i.e. creation, storage, reporting, disposal).  Via strategic analysis of big data we can now deliver new levels of business performance, utilizing tools to power and disrupt markets and threaten others outside traditional business boundaries.  For example, in the oil and gas industry we are now using big data to discover and develop insights that can enhance drilling operations to extract more oil from wells previously considered too dry to be worthy of consideration.  And, perhaps even better, strategic analysis of geologic data is improving efficiencies by more accurately locating drilling sites to achieve the highest level of oil and gas production at the lowest cost in a given region.  In the automotive industry, strategic data analysis can create insights into consumer habits and preferences that will enable manufacturers to more accurately tailor their products to their target customers, thereby enhancing production efficiencies while reducing operational costs and ultimately delivering more value to both manufacturers and their customers. 
What I find especially inspiring is the possibility of utilizing data analysis to not only drive profits but to also drive forward organizational efficiencies and innovation management (which logically can only ultimately enhance profits) since big data is as much about efficient organizational integration and efficient targeting of innovation efforts as it is about underlying technologies.  The study we are releasing today demonstrates that there are many aspects to consider in harnessing big data in the process of becoming a successful insight-led organization.  It is a business imperative – you must have the organizational structure and data governance in place to make big data work and deliver results.  One of the most encouraging findings from our study is the desire for, and movement towards, organizational change:  43% of organizations are currently restructuring and 33% have appointed C-level roles in order to exploit data opportunities.
As you personally evaluate the new world of big data and strategic insights, consider the following statement – each of us can play a role, whether it be by thinking boldly and integrating the art and science of big data analysis into our work lives, or by simply consuming one of the many products and services that can be enhanced and delivered via the insights that big data analysis can provide.  For me, big data analysis can be the very heart of innovation, that specific necessary tool to help deliver more powerful, impactful results.