Business analytics is a core asset for companies focused to deliver on business objectives of growth and revenue.  On an annual basis, marketers now spend as much as fifty billion dollars for business analytics.  Providing data-driven solutions, business analytics is essential for smarter decisions by helping understand customers and operations.  Also, business analytics should not be confused with business intelligence.  While business intelligence provides information in identifying aspects of the business, business analytics explains the reasons behind business performance  and using that information to forecast future results.

An excellent example of business analytics could be seen with Google’s HR (Analytics at Google).  By creating a People’s Analytics Department, Google’s HR utilizes data in order to make decisions. In order to learn about the effectiveness of their managers, Google turned to business analytics as well.  Through Project Oxygen, a codename for the initiative to learn about management, data revealed that areas with better managers had more content and productive employees.  In order to learn which incentives drive better management, the impact of the Great Manager Award was observed. Through business analytics utilized in this process, Google HR decided to continue the Great Manager Award and made revisions in its training program.

Though business analytics is often associated with “big data” and “big industry”, it has played a crucial role in SMB’s as well. Adriana Papell, a fashion company, had difficulties in utilizing data to make business decisions. By utilizing business analytics practices, the company was able to learn which of their products sell the most during specific times.  The data led to increase their sales by 15%.  Columbus Foods also utilized business analytics to track historical sales data for their meat.  Through the information, they were able to understand the buying patterns of their customers and the exact demand of specific meats.

Such excellent examples help better understand the significance of business analytics. It is is the user stories and how teams are using data shows the impact it makes on business decisions.

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