I recently fielded a forum question about the cost-creation versus value-adding capabilities of information technology (IT) and advanced (i.e., bespoke) analytics in enterprise. Here is how I responded:
Regarding the linkages between information technology (IT), advanced analytics, and value, I would gently suggest that IT is a cost center, and advanced analytics are the value-adding proposition. In other words, don't go to the IT department if you are seeking to activate value-adding analytics (though I will concede that IT does have an effective role in business intelligence [BI] production, which is very different from advanced analytics in my view).
Unfortunately, IT solution providers know full well that advanced analytics is what creates value, and so IT firms will typically "bundle" various analytic offerings with a proposed IT solution in an effort to bamboozle the client into believing that scarce IT dollars can buy both transaction management and advanced analytical services together in one "big" IT installation deal. Buyers of IT solutions should therefore beware.
What is needed today is for IT managers to yield the analytics space to subject matter experts with analytical solutions that stand separate from the data warehousing infrastructure, while seeking to reduce costs in IT by exploiting the economies of scale that IT solutions typically contribute to the cost analysis.
Again, IT is a cost center, while advanced analytics (separate from BI) are the value-adding activity.
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