This week in data – 8th November

It isn’t news that some businesses are taking longer to implement big data than others. But some new information suggests they might want to up their pace.

A new report from TechRepublic and ZDnet shows 51% of businesses haven’t started a big data project yet. They’re falling behind. Of the businesses that have started using big data, 78% say it was more than worth the effort.

Talent shortages are also very real, with 73% of adopters saying they’re finding it difficult to find good employees. The figures are commonplace, but provide a very real threat to businesses that haven’t started yet: those that are already using big data are seeing the advantages and are not likely to slow down anytime soon.

Meanwhile, the rise of connected devices is making it easier for everyday users to watch their health – but what about in the workplace?

A new business is doing just that. As chronicled in ZDNet, GuardHat is now placing connected devices inside construction hard hats. Users are tracked against their location to identify any dangerous environments – along with other monitoring systems for gas, and even audio or visual communication after a fall.

“This approach can effectively reduce risks and save lives, as systems like GuardHat’s can provide capabilities like virtual geofencing to keep workers away from dangerous areas,” says Flavio Villanustre, the vice president of technology and head of HPCC Systems for LexisNexis Risk Solutions – they’re partnering with GuardHat to supply the tech.

While connected devices are nothing new, this startup shows how implementing them in existing systems can create new opportunities for both businesses and the employees they hire.

In other news:

Central banks around the world are often at the forefront of technology, utilising new methods to stay on top of how money is distributed in any economy.

Now, a new report shows central banks are upping their game when it comes to big data.

A survey conducted by Central Banking during August and September 2017 has found that over two-thirds of the respondents said new projects in big data were started during the past year.

Not only that, but central banks are increasingly using big data in their policymaking: 50% of respondents said it was another input into processes, and one third said it was a “core component”.

Like many other organisations both public and private, data collection is a concern, but there was one significant finding: more central banks are carving out budgets for data handling. The number of respondents doing so is twice that of the 2016 survey.

Efficiency and cost reduction are just two of the benefits central banks find from using big data. As time continues no doubt more banks will jump on board – confirming the hypothesis that data continues to fuel untold opportunities both at the public and private level.

Worth a read:

Banking continues its love affair with big data – Wells Fargo signs a new deal with two data exchange businesses to make loan applications easier. Financial Times.

15 stunning data visualisations and what you can learn from them – something for everyone. Medium.

Until next week.

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