10 New Year resolutions for CIOs who want to take the Big Data plunge in 2014

The Big Data hype is everywhere, but many CIOs aren’t sure how to take their first steps toward adopting Big Data. Here are 10 New Year’s resolutions for CIOs who want to take the Big Data plunge in 2014.

By Andrew Jennings, Chief Analytics Officer at FICO, Jan 2014. Apache_pig_logo

1. Learn a new language - Add people to my team who are fluent in languages such as Groovy, Pig and Python so we can build applications and systems that are optimized for manipulating and analyzing Big Data.

2. MapReduce my waistline – Shed a few IT pounds by improving our ability to digest large amounts of data. Parallel computing is the way to do it, and adopting the Hadoop MapReduce framework is a great first step.

3. Live in the moment - While the collection of historical data remains important for developing analytic models, we will also deploy systems that analyze data as it streams in. Real-time analytics is the future of Big Data. Expand my circle of friends

4. Expand my circle of friends - Create relationships between my analytics team and the lines of business so we can better understand the business problems that need to be solved.

5. Explore new places - Look for new data sources and new types of data that could have value for my company and improve our decision making.

6. Embrace the chaos - The amount of unstructured data – video, blogs, social data – is hundreds of times greater than the amount of structured data. We need to tap into unstructured data as a source of business intelligence. Presentation Skills

7. Bone up on my presentation skills - Find compelling ways to present my team’s analytic discoveries, emphasizing visual, data-driven insights that can facilitate smarter decision making across the company, including the c-suite.

8. Be a good neighbor - Encourage business units to share information across organizational silos. Partnering in this way enables more data analysis, and generates more value for the company. Get involved

9. Get more involved in the community - Leverage open source offerings for my Big Data strategy. Collaboration with experts outside our company, and the flexibility to customize software, can help us develop state-of-the-art solutions.

10. Be a better student - Implement machine-learning strategies to accelerate the pace of our analytic advances. Continuous feedback and input will enable us to optimize our decision making.

Andrew JenningsDr. Andrew Jennings is FICO's chief analytics officer and head of FICO Labs. Before joining FICO in 1994, Andrew served as head of unsecured credit risk for Abbey National plc. He also served as a lecturer in economics and econometrics at the University of Nottingham. He holds a Ph.D. in economics. He blogs at http://ficolabsblog.fico.com.