“Without big data analytics, companies are blind and deaf, wandering out onto the web like deer on a freeway.” – Geoffrey Moore, Author of Crossing the Chasm & Inside the Tornado
There’s no denying the power of big data. Described by data analytics toolkit company Apache Hadoop as “a framework that allows for the distributed processing of large data sets across clusters of computers”, you can see why the concept means big business at the crux of the digital age.
In 2015, a Gartner survey revealed more than 75 percent of companies had already or were planning to invest in big data within the next two years. And with the speed of computer processing continuing to double every 18 months, the big data phenomenon shows no sign of slowing down.
Now, this is a tool that’s utilised in industries far and wide, from banking and security to entertainment and media; healthcare and education to natural resources and government; retail and wholesale to insurance and transport; in fact, there isn’t a single industry not influenced by the field.
“The key thing is to embrace the change,” said Alibaba CEO Daniel Zhang in a recent interview at the consumer goods forum global summit.
“The world is changing so fast,” he added. “Today we are saying that everybody is connected by the mobile internet and tomorrow, everything is connected.
“With the power of data, we enable our partners to do a better job. It allows doing business everywhere.”
And he’s right. We see the evolution of incredible concepts like AI, machine automation and the construction of smart cities taking place everywhere around us. The dominant, driving force of such relevant developments? Of course, big data and data analytics – a strand of the science discipline which allows us to both read and understand complex datasets.
But how are these topics relevant to global business?
First up comes optimisation. Through use and comprehension of these intricate tools, retailers can optimise stock based on predictions generated from social media data, web search trends and even weather forecasts. It’s about giving consumers what they want exactly when they want it.
Next comes the competitive corporate edge. When used effectively, tools for data mining, analysis and forecasting give businesses a leading advantage, providing structure and insight that ultimately prevents loss and grows bottom lines.
Then there’s safety and security, a principle held dear amid the threats of an increasingly digital age. Giving business leaders and stakeholders a detailed map of the entire data landscape, analytics allow companies to track and combat internal issues long before they strike.
And this merely scratches the surface of big data’s business benefits.
In line with the growth of smart devices and smart cities, we are fuelling the development of smart business processes. Data and analytics are set to futurise global business, and students who invest in this booming field are also setting themselves up to thrive.
These 4 schools will help you master big data and analytics…
UCLA has pioneered the higher education sector for more than 100 years; leading, educating and innovating through a history known as a century of optimism. This world-renowned institution is powered by achievement, producing 14 Nobel Prizes, 13 MacArthur Fellows and more Olympic medals than most nations are able to count.
Anderson School of Management reflects the fundamental values of UCLA. Here, students have round-the-clock access to a lively and connected business community, reaping the endless rewards of a location set close to Silicon Valley and Silicon Beach. The school boasts an impressive programme portfolio, serving the needs and goals of students from all corners of the globe.
The Master of Science in Business Analytics (MSBA) here is no exception. A degree that’s relevant to businesses, government, consumers, investors, policymakers and more, graduates enter a fast-growing sector enriched with the technical skills and business acumen needed to succeed.
The MSBA is unique in the fact it teaches students to not just master, but to lead the field. Showing them how to manage, capture, describe and analyse complex data flows, the degree instils skills needed to extract useful and targeted information, empowering informed business decisions that help graduates enhance daily business operations and fuel company growth.
MSBA candidates are unique in their ability to combine advanced data management, programming and modelling procedures with an ability to communicate in modern business terms with senior business executives.
In the MSBA, the Anderson School fills a rapidly rising demand in the global employment market, producing qualified graduates who advance the business future.
The University of Texas at Austin defines itself as a bold, ambitious leader, ranked among the nation’s best and brightest research institutions.
The beating pulse of this renowned institution is McCombs Business School – an institution dedicated to creating leaders who bring value to the world.
“Texas McCombs is uniquely poised and strongly equipped to bring together people and ideas in order to generate solutions,” says Jay Hartzell, Dean of the school.
“Our current and future students are encouraged to think broadly and creatively, our faculty focuses on the impact their teaching and research have on the community, our alumni serve as the foundation of our human centered, future focused brand, and our constituents give tirelessly of their time and generously of their finances, in order to transform lives and change the world.”
The Master of Science in Business Analytics at McCombs offers a thriving community for students, connecting learners across all four Master of Science programs.
Last year, McCombs’ Master of Science in Business Analytics ranked 2nd on the globe, shining a light on the school’s excellence within this specialist field. This comprehensive 10-month programme teaches students how to harness vast amounts of data and use it to improve the global business environment, also granting them the chance to build unrivalled professional networks and industry connections.
Founded in 1918, the Fox School of Business has built upon the outstanding reputation of Temple University – an institution known as a hotbed of research and an engine for employment.
With almost 100 years’ experience under its belt, the Fox School of Business boasts a distinguished tradition for preparing leaders, professionals and entrepreneurs for thriving global careers. As the largest and most comprehensive business education provider in greater Philadelphia, the Fox School is dedicated to the integration of technology in all teaching, along with the encouragement of entrepreneurship and innovation among all business graduates.
Strategic networks with the regional and international business communities gives Fox School students unparalleled access to cutting-edge companies, granting them invaluable industry insights long before they graduate.
Fox’s Specialized Master’s in Business Analytics gives students the power to turn data into decisions. This STEM-designated degree offers an innovative “trunk and branch” curriculum structure, letting learners tailor their learning experience to their desired career outcome.
Here, you’ll learn to apply course material to live data, on top of gaining commercial-grade consulting experience and providing analytic solutions to real life organisations. This is a course that helps propel your career in a rapidly-growing industry.
UNC Charlotte is acknowledged as an urban research university, leveraging its location in the state’s largest and most influential city to refine graduates who compete on the global stage.
Accredited by AACSB International, UNC Charlotte’s Belk College of Business offers top-ranked graduate programmes in America’s second-largest financial centre.
For decades, the college’s world-class faculty have partnered with Charlotte’s leading corporations, developing a curriculum that fulfils the needs of the city’s thriving business scene.
“I came to UNC Charlotte’s Belk College of Business because of its connection with the Charlotte business community,” says Amanda Patrick, a graduate of Belk College. “Charlotte is one of the largest financial centres in the country, allowing for many networking opportunities.”
The PSM in Data Science and Business Analytics (Interdisciplinary Graduate Programme) refines accomplished professionals in this sought-after discipline. Learners become qualified practitioners, fully trained to navigate the industry and bridge the gap between business, science and big data.
The programme is designed for busy, hard working adults, offering flexible delivery that’s easily accessible for both full- and part-time students.
*Some of the institutions featured in this article are commercial partners of Study International