U.S. Demand for Analytics Intensifies as Enterprises Democratize Access to Data, Tools

ISG Provider Lens™ reports show companies using data analytics services and platforms in holistic strategies to help all employees gain insights for business results

U.S. enterprises are investing more in data analytics services and platforms, as employees at all levels gain more appreciation for the value of data, according to two new reports published by Information Services Group (ISG) (Nasdaq: III), a leading global technology research and advisory firm.

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“Getting the most value from data analytics requires a sound strategy and an understanding of how analytics projects can improve business outcomes”

The 2021 ISG Provider Lens™ Analytics Services and Analytics Platforms and Solutions reports for the U.S. find companies now recognize the need to make relevant data and analytics capabilities available to all departments and lines of business. The pandemic has both accelerated the growth in demand for analytics and helped organizations prioritize investments and innovations.

“Getting the most value from data analytics requires a sound strategy and an understanding of how analytics projects can improve business outcomes,” said Kathy Rudy, partner and chief data and analytics officer, ISG. “Enterprises are partnering with service and platform providers to develop solutions that can empower all employees and grow with the organization.”

Despite the ongoing economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, businesses are investing in scalable data analytics platforms that democratize access to data and deliver business results, according to the Analytics Platforms and Solutions report. This is bringing two categories of platforms to the fore, namely self-service business intelligence (BI) and data preparation and integration.

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Self-service BI allows non-technical users and executives to gain deeper insights from available data, and ISG expects these tools to include voice-based querying and better cognitive capabilities soon. Data preparation and integration is essential for building unified analytics platforms that can perform data search, collection, analysis, visualization, reporting and other functions in complex, often siloed enterprise data environments.

A new breed of specialized data preparation and integration vendors, offering better support for multiple data sources, is gaining ground on large traditional enterprise vendors that tend to rely on their own systems, ISG says. Platform providers with extensive cloud expertise, as well as vendors offering cloud services for data collection and connectivity, are also growing as more enterprises roll out multicloud and hybrid cloud environments.

The data analytics trend is expanding into new vertical markets, including consumer goods, manufacturing, healthcare and life sciences, according to the Analytics Services report. Service providers report a growing number of projects in these fields, especially for data science and data engineering services, the report says. Most of the projects focus on common enterprise issues such as sales, supply chains and predictive maintenance, driving both revenue and profit.

Several service providers have begun to develop platforms and tools in the form of pre-built solutions, in some cases competing directly with platform vendors, the report says. These have fewer functions than platforms from pure-play vendors but are designed as consumer-grade solutions to help existing clients include more employees in their data-centric business initiatives.

As companies increase their use of data science, concerns are growing about trust and the responsible use of AI, including the ability of an AI or ML model to accommodate for risks, biases and discrimination, ISG says. Service providers are addressing this trend by creating trustworthy frameworks, which are expected to become standard offerings that differentiate them competitively.

Meanwhile, service providers have renewed their focus on compliance, governance and regulatory practices, especially to meet data privacy and AI ethics requirements, the report says. ISG expects providers to include automated compliance in their data management systems to address these concerns.

The 2021 ISG Provider Lens™ Analytics Services report for the U.S. evaluates the capabilities of 35 providers across three quadrants: Data Science Services, Data Engineering Services and Data Lifecycle Management Services.

The report names Accenture, Atos, Capgemini, Cognizant, Deloitte, DXC Technology, IBM, Infosys and Wipro as Leaders in all three quadrants. It names Tech Mahindra as a Leader in two quadrants and HCL and TCS as Leaders in one quadrant each.

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In addition, Hexaware, LTI and Tech Mahindra are named as Rising Stars—companies with a “promising portfolio” and “high future potential” by ISG’s definition—in one quadrant each.

Customized versions of the Analytics Services report are available from Tech Mahindra and Vuram.

The 2021 ISG Provider Lens™ Analytics Platforms report for the U.S. evaluates the capabilities of 39 providers across two quadrants: Self-Service Business Intelligence Platforms and Data Preparation and Integration Platforms.

The report names IBM, SAP, SAS and TIBCO as Leaders in both quadrants. It names AWS, Hitachi Vantara, Informatica, Microsoft, Oracle, Qlik, Sisense, Tableau, Talend and Teradata as Leaders in one quadrant each.

In addition, Qlik and Zoho are named as Rising Stars—companies with a “promising portfolio” and “high future potential” by ISG’s definition—in one quadrant each.

The 2021 ISG Provider Lens™ Analytics Services and Analytics Platforms and Solutions reports for the U.S. are available to subscribers or for one-time purchase.