While governments around the world have identified data as a strategic resource to drive economic and social progress, Hewlett Packard Enterprise has unveiled global survey results showing that a lack of data maturity hinders both the private and public sector from achieving key outcomes such as growing sales or advancing environmental sustainability.
Conducted by YouGov on behalf of HPE, the survey of more than 8,600 decision makers from across industries and the public sector in 19 countries reveals that the average organisation's data maturity level or ability to create value from data is 2.6 on a five-point scale, with only three percent reaching the highest maturity level.
"There is broad consensus that the worlds data holds an enormous potential to advance the way we live and work however, unlocking this potential requires a shift in organisations' digital transformation strategies," says Antonio Neri, president and CEO of HPE.
"We must move from cloud first to data first as the North Star of digital transformation meaning that organisations align their strategic, organisational and technological choices with the overarching goal of leveraging data as a strategic asset.
Lack of data capabilities impedes key outcomes
The survey is based on a maturity model developed by HPE that assesses an organisation's ability to create value from data based on strategic, organisational and technological criteria. The lowest maturity level is called data anarchy; on this level, data pools are isolated from one another, and are not systematically analysed to create insights or outcomes. The highest level is called data economics; at this level, an organisation strategically leverages data to drive outcomes, based on a unified access to both internal and external data sources which are analysed with advanced analytics and artificial intelligence.
Survey results reveal that 14% of organisations are on maturity level 1 (data anarchy), 29% on level 2 (data reporting), 37% on level 3 (data insights), 17% on level 4 (data centricity), and just 3% are on level 5 (data economics).
The lack of data capabilities, in turn, limits organisations ability to create key outcomes such as growing sales (30%), innovating (28%), advancing customer experience (24%), improving environmental sustainability (21%) and increasing internal efficiency (21%).
Organisations must close strategic, organisational and technological gaps
The survey provides a detailed view of the strategic, organisational and technological gaps that organisations must close to capitalise on data along their entire value chain.
- Only 13% of respondents say that their organiation's data strategy is a key part of their corporate strategy.
- Almost half of respondents say their organisation allocates either no budget for data initiatives (28%) or only occasionally funds data initiatives via the IT budget (20%).
- Only 28% of respondents confirmed they have a strategic focus on providing data-driven products or services.
- And almost half of respondents say their organisations do not use methodologies like machine learning or deep learning but rely on spreadsheets (29%) or business intelligence and canned reporting (18%) for data analysis.
- Creating value from data also requires aggregating data or data insights from different applications, locations or external data spaces. For example, a manufacturers sensor telemetry from sold products can help the R&D department to better align the next product generation with customer needs, and sharing insights from patient data among hospitals can advance medical diagnosis.
Organisations want control across clouds and edges
A characteristic of a low data maturity level is that there is no overarching data and analytics architecture, but data is isolated in individual applications or locations. This is the case for 34% of respondents. On the other hand, only 19% have implemented a central data hub or fabric that provides unified access to real-time data across their organisation, and another 8% say this data hub also includes external data sources.
Given that data sources are increasingly distributed across clouds and edges, the majority of respondents (62%) say that its strategically important to have a high degree of control over their data and the means to create value from data. More than half of respondents (53%) are concerned that data monopolies have too much control over their capability to create value from data, and 39 percent are re-evaluating their cloud strategy due to increasing cloud costs (42%), concerns over data security (37%), the need for a more flexible data architecture (37%) and the lack of control over their data (32%).
HPE GreenLake brings the cloud to the data to maximise control and outcomes
"HPE's strategy is focused on helping organisations accelerate outcomes by unlocking value from all of their data, regardless of where it lives," says Neri.
"The HPE GreenLake edge-to-cloud platform enables customers to deploy a cloud-everywhere model with the freedom to choose the right location for their data and applications while providing one operating model to orchestrate across edges, colocations, data centres, and clouds. As a result, customers can control their data assets and industrialise their data supply chain through a unified data fabric that empowers analysis and decision making at speed.
"Because of the massive growth of data at the edge, organisations need hybrid edge-to-cloud architectures where the cloud comes to the data, not the other way around.," Neri says.
"HPE GreenLake empowers organisations with the ability to access, control, protect, govern and unlock the value of data anywhere, unified into one consistent experience."
HPE has bolstered its hybrid cloud leadership by announcing new application, analytics, and developer services for HPE GreenLake that enable organisations to drive a data-first modernisation strategy for production workloads across hybrid cloud environments.