Incorrect analysis of big data has significant impact on revenue, say third of finance professionals

16th October 2013

Incorrect analysis of organizational data is having a significant impact on revenue, say over a third (34%) of global finance professionals surveyed by CIMA (Chartered Institute of Management Accountants) and AICPA (American Institute of CPAs).




The international survey of 2,000 CGMAs (Chartered Global Management Accountant) finance professionals, including those working at CEO and CFO level, reveals 86% of organizations are struggling to turn growing volumes of data into valuable insight and are suffering as a result. In addition, almost half (44%) of respondents said their organization did not have the sufficient technology tools in place to understand new trends impacting their business and only 53% are investing in the capabilities to harness the benefits.

The top three reasons for organizations not introducing new or improved practices are the costs, the value not being understood and time availability.

The findings are in stark contrast to the estimated impact of big data in the future, with 87% of respondents saying big data and better analytics will change the way business is done over the next ten years and those who do not harness the concept will find themselves at a competitive disadvantage (86%) by the end of the decade.

Respondents said the main barriers their organization face when attempting to extract valuable insight from data are:

• Difficulties in bringing data together from different databases and silos (62%)

• Ensuring the business captures reliable, good quality data in the first place (51%)

• Extracting insight from non-financial data (46%)

• Ensuring insight gained from data is used to improve performance (43%)

• Identifying meaningful trends and insights in a mass of data (39%)

• Intelligent visualization and reporting of data (34%)

Peter Simons, Technical Specialist, CIMA, says “Big data is increasingly becoming a core business asset. According to the survey, 93% of respondents agreed that finance has an essential role to play in helping organizations benefit from data-related projects. Finance professionals, especially CGMAs, are well placed to do this by helping organizations translate analytical insights into commercial insights to create value.”