|Wanted: Better data analysis for corporate decision-making|
Corporate executives have high expectations for the next generation of IT systems, seeking advanced analytical capabilities that can cut through the complexity of company and market data to identify the most important information needed to make better competitive decisions, according to a survey by audit, tax and advisory firm KPMG LLP.
“The priority companies are now putting on information intelligence came through loud and clear in our survey, which found that data needs are driving company investment decisions regarding the upgrade and advancement of ERP and IT architectures,” says Stephen Hasty, KPMG’s national advisory innovation leader. “In the past, the focus was usually on connecting processes or transactions from siloed or disparate systems, often creating a hodge-podge of unfocused information.”
The KPMG survey, taken during the 2011 Oracle Open World conference in San Francisco in October, found that 41% of the 336 respondents said their organizations planned an ERP upgrade, with 26% planning implementation in the next 12 months.
Nearly half (49%) of the survey respondents acknowledged their organization was overwhelmed with data, making decision-making difficult. They also said consideration of a cloud strategy will present future data-management challenges (59%), although 56% of the respondents acknowledged that cloud can help them become more agile and competitive.
Hasty noted that 48% of the respondents said an ERP upgrade was an opportunity to improve operational efficiency, eliminate manual processes (42%), improve alignment between IT and the business units (37%), and improve compliance (34%). In addition, 62% said their organization is working to improve decision-making by determining how to best analyze existing information.
“When the current IT systems were installed, they were basic hardware and software that most often had to be retrofitted or customized to meet the unique needs of a specific business-unit,” says Hasty. “Today, executives have solicited business-unit input in advance, and planning for new IT frameworks at leading organizations already includes data analytics, predictive modeling and cloud strategies to improve corporate knowledge.”
Hasty also says the survey found more executives viewing cloud as a challenging, though viable option for the next generation of ERP. In 2010, a KPMG survey found 82% of respondents said migration to a cloud environment raised a broad set of business transformation issues that needed to be better understood across the organization before adopting such a strategy, compared with just 53% in this year’s survey.
In addition, 59% of the recent KPMG survey at Oracle Open World conference said cutting through the complex web of their stored corporate data and market events and conditions to make appropriate decisions has become a concern for senior management and 54% said it had become a concern for their board of directors.
“Leading companies are utilizing IT upgrades to better manage their data, where to store the data as a means of becoming more agile, and finding improved ways to analyze their data and turn information into knowledge that is actionable,” Hasty says.
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