Accenture warns for shortage of Big Data professionals

30 September 2014 2 min. read
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According to new research by consulting firm Accenture, a scarcity of Big Data talent poses one of the main challenges for companies to effectively develop, deploy and manage Big Data.

The research from consulting firm Accenture, conducted by its Analytics unit, reveals that the role of Big Data is becoming paramount: 93% of all executives* interviewed view the use of Big Data as ‘extremely important’ or ‘important’ for their companies. In the research, Accenture also looked at the main challenges to the implementation of Big Data.

Challenges for big data use

The biggest challenge named by 51% of the respondents of the survey is security. Budget comes second and is listed by 47%, followed by lack of talent to implement big data (41%) and lack of talent to run big data and analytics (37%). The two latter are both signs of a scarcity of Big Data professionals, and Accenture states that as a result of this, successful company users have to rely heavily on external experienced resources. 57% said they had hired consultants to help with their Big Data, 45% used contract employees, technology vendor resources were used by 34% of the companies surveyed.

Ways companies deal with big data challenges

Recommendations for successful big data use

With so many companies competing for help from the outside, sourcing Big Data talent could also post a problem in the long run. To deal with the lack of talent to deal with Big Data, Accenture recommends companies to focus on building skills within the company, through training, development and research. 54% of the executives stated that they have already developed internal technical training opportunities for their workers, and the vast majority of 91% stated that they expected to increase the big data expertise of their company within the next year.

“We’ve seen organisations overcome Big Data implementation challenges by remaining flexible and recognising that no single solution suits every situation,” says Vince Dell’Anno, Managing Director and Global Information Management Lead at Accenture Analytics. “If a particular approach doesn’t work, organisations quickly try another one, learning as they grow.”

* For its survey, the firm interviewed more than 1,000 executives of companies that had completed at least one Big Data implementation. These companies are active in seven industries, such as Banking, Energy, Insurance, and Retail, and located in 19 countries around the globe, including the US, China, Germany, the Netherlands and UK.