Healthcare News & Insights

Report reveals why most Big Data projects fail

Big Data has been getting a lot of attention lately, especially in health care. However, a recent survey says many attempts to start Big Data projects fail before they’re completed. 

Most organizations see Big Data as a key to their growth. When asked to list their top IT priorities for the next few years, only 6% of organizations didn’t include Big Data in their top ten, according to a recent survey from Infochimps.

However, most of those that have tried to implement Big Data found that planning difficulties and organizational problems prevent them from finishing projects.

In fact, more than half (55%) of Big Data projects never even get completed, according to the survey.

These were the three main obstacles that stood in the way:

1. Lack of cooperation among departments

According to many survey respondents, the IT team — the ones who will actually implement the Big Data technology — often aren’t consulted until the project has already begun.

Among the 300 IT pros surveyed, 39% said a lack of cooperation between IT and the business was a major obstacle to implementing a Big Data project.

2. Poor planning

In addition to poor communication, organizations often underestimate how much time and effort the project will require, and therefore, they don’t allocate enough resources.

Two of the top obstacles blamed for project failures were:

  • Failure to recognize the scope of the project (cited by 58% of respondents), and
  • Technical stumbling blocks (41%).

As those answers show, one of the reasons IT needs to be involved in Big Data projects early on is to offer expertise regarding what resources will be required.

3. Lack of staff experienced in Big Data

Big Data is a recent hot trend, and that means that there are more organizations looking for people with the right skills and experience than there are people with that experience. In fact, most organizations (80%) say they’re having a hard time finding the right expertise for their projects. In addition, 73% say understanding the technology required is difficult.

What can IT departments do to find the right talent? One option for attracting new hires is to work closely with educational institutions offering Big Data programs. However, some experts say organizations are better off giving current staffers new training to help the gain Big Data skills.

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