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Fortune 1000 Firms Could Increase Revenue by Billions with Effective Data: Study: Page 2

By Thor Olavsrud     Feedback
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Turning Data into Dollars

Sybase said the study definitively found that even the most incremental investments in improving the versatility of data has a dramatic effect on employee productivity, return on equity, return on invested capital and return on assets.

"Despite decades of IT investment in information technology, the direct correlation between those investments and the financial performance of the business has eluded senior decision-makers," Anitesh Barua, a distinguished teaching professor and lead researcher at the University of Texas at Austin, said in a statement. "This is the first study that quantifies the relationship between incremental improvements in data and key performance metrics of businesses today. Previous studies tell us neither the magnitude of the effect on performance nor what it takes to improve the attributes of data. We are encouraged by our findings and expect the business community to take notice."

However, it's not clear how many businesses have gotten the message so far, despite a good deal of crowing about the need for improved business analytics from the major enterprise software vendors. Accounting and consulting giant Deloitte last week reported that a poll it conducted found that a third lack or aren't aware of their business's enterprise data analytics capabilities. More than half also said enterprise data is trapped in silos or shared across business functions only in limited ways.

Still, there's some hope for getting the word out, with Sybase and the University of Texas continuing their joint work. Another round of research, according to Sybase, will apply the same data to examine customer-focused effects on areas such as the ability to innovate to derive revenue from new products. A second will apply the same data to examine the ability to expand the existing customer base and operational effects on areas such as asset utilization, the accuracy of planning and forecasting and on-time delivery of products or provisioning of services, respectively.

Thor Olavsrud is a contributor to InternetNews.com, the news service of Internet.com, the network for technology professionals.

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This article was originally published on September 1, 2010
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