Insights as a service is a model experiencing supersonic growth, so it’s natural to wonder where it’s headed. Fortunately, there are some clues that can give us a sense of where and how it is likely to evolve.
Consider what is fueling its growth. That starts with determining its added value in a marketplace already flooded with apps and other services. Essentially, IaaS is a cloud-mediated interaction with a company that processes your data and provides you with insights and business intelligence about it.
Because it’s a service, it allows the user to request as little or as much insight as they require for businesses needs or quandaries they are facing.
The Rise of IaaS
Because data is plentiful but the understanding of that data still lags behind, it’s unsurprising that the IaaS market was predicted by MarketsandMarkets to grow to well over $3.3 billion in the next few years.
That lag comes amid options for acting on insights in real time, using artificial intelligence systems and clever new ways to ensure parts of a company’s online presence are hooked together. Without the right insight, all of that automation is underutilized.
At the same time, companies are trusting the cloud more than ever as a model for offloading even their most critical operations. They’re also familiar with the subscription models that are used to pay for these services. IaaS, then, fits well to something they are already employing in other areas of their business, such as platform- or software as a service (PaaS or SaaS, respectively), which streamlines integrating this technology into their operations.
In some cases, data can be seen as its own revenue stream, which insights can drive forward to greater scaling and growth. Or IaaS can help to increase data prioritization from what ‘s collected. In the end, companies can create a plan for measuring whether they are making best use of their data, how they collect it, and what they expect back from the IaaS. Generally, all of this works only if the company has identified exactly what challenges it’s attempting to overcome and has zeroed in on the type of data it needs.
This can greatly reduce in-house costs and can allow the company to focus on the higher-level strategy instead of getting lost in the weeds of data analysis. From that comes better decisions, which drives better returns on all investments. That can be particularly valuable in outdated business processes, such as some supply chains.
That’s all the more valuable when you consider that nowhere near enough companies appear to be able to analyze the data they have. An IBM Business Tech Trends study found that 20 percent of companies are up to the task of gathering data-based insights effectively.
To avoid that pitfall, companies must be prepared to use the most effective path forward to capture insights that will drive growth. For most businesses, the best choice is to partner with an IaaS provider. Being informed about the best and most actionable principles for doing that can give leaders a great advantage as they plan their trajectory into the Data Age. So let’s take a look a few key ideas to keep in mind.
1. Plan accordingly.
Before you even begin, it’s useful to have a high-level view of how insights will fit into the short- and long-term future decisions at your company. This is a good time to ask yourself how much latitude you and your partners have for taking the company in a different direction if the data-based insights suggest you should pivot that way.
In some cases, you may need to prepare to move in a whole new direction. Whether that is feasible will be constrained by financial and operational considerations. It’s good to have a clear sense of all that before you dive deeper.
2. Determine the current data needs.
First, it’s important to understand whether your company needs to use IaaS. Perhaps you can conduct your own analysis and generate insights in-house.
A good step in that direction is to work toward opening up informational silos at your organization so that you can determine which data could be fruitfully shared among departments. Of course, that is a big undertaking and can present operational disruption and personnel challenges. You may wish to start small, sharing a moderate amount of data and seeing how that works. You can always turn to an IaaS provider at any time if you would prefer to compare their efficiency to your own efforts.
3. Find the best partner.
If you find that your time and resources would be better spent externalizing this work to a collaborator, it’s important to choose an IaaS partner wisely.
Look for a company that has been working in this area for some time, uses the cloud as an interface, and can make use of multiple streams of data. In the end, they should be prepared to offer specific and actionable insights that you can take forward in your journey for growth.
IaaS is poised to be a boon to growth in the marketplace in the next few years, and companies that are proactive about integrating it into their overall strategies will be well positioned to have the most effective approaches to their data-driven insights and tactics.