Big Data Top Trends in 2015

Big Data may bring increased usage of in-memory databases, data democratization, sensor data, customer and HR analytics, and big data-driven corporate insights in 2015, according to Josie King of Innovation Enterprise.

By Josie King (Innovation Enterprise), Nov 2014

Big Data Predictions

Big Data has seen a huge leap forward in 2014 regarding how it has been represented and used across companies. The adoption rates have grown and the importance of Big Data as a business function has increased, but what are we going to see in 2015?

In-Memory Databases

As the use of data has increased in the past year, the speed at which results are needed has grown with it. When this hasn’t been the case, people want to be more informed than before or have the ability to make decisions in real time, rather than through the use of reports reporting on historical data.

In-Memory databases allow companies the freedom to access, analyze and take actions based on data much quicker than regular databases. This in turn means that either decisions can be made quicker as data can be analyzed faster or more informed as more data can be analyzed in the same amount of time.

Non-Data Scientists

As we as a society have become data driven, one of the main aspects that has become clear is that finding the necessary talent has become difficult. This means that companies are often reliant on either too few staff or outsourced consultants.

Therefore, 2015 is likely to see more automated platforms that can allow employees who may not have as much skill with data as others, to collect, analyze and make decisions based on this data. This could be anything from simple to use interfaces with more complex backends or simpler tasks that could create business results.

More Sensor Driven Data

The internet of things is evolving and more companies are using it, but it may well hit its tipping point in 2015. This would be sensor-to-sensor data being collected, collated and analyzed through purely sensor based collection. This can be done in multiple ways from the way that objects are interacting with another object, to the settings that people are using on particular devices.

Sensor based data is unlikely to out perform transactional data (which currently makes up the majority of data collection) but is still likely to see a marked increase. It is likely that we are going to see more device-to-device data being created and collected in 2015, which could see this number grow beyond transactional data within the next 5 years.

Deeper Customer Insight

Despite the fact that transactional data is still more numerous that sensor data, 2015 may be the year that we see it being truly looked at in multi-dimensional ways to create even deeper customer insight.

This could be anything from geographical data to a deeper understanding of purchasing trends according to different, oblique factors. With new technology allowing metrics to be tracked across even more areas and wearables creating even more possible trackable actions, deeper customer understanding is inevitable.

HR Analytics

Once thought of as the definition of making your employees ‘just a number’, HR Analytics are being shown to have significant benefits to both the company and its employees. We believe that 2015 is going to see more companies wake up to the positives that an effective HR strategy can bring.

From optimizing workflow to tracking overall employee happiness, we are likely to see an increased use of HR analytics in 2015 as those who have adopted it within the last couple of years will be gaining ground on their competitors and those who don’t have it will need to catch up.

No Ownership In Just One Department

Data will become a commodity that is not just kept in one department alone and used purely by senior company leaders. 2015 is likely to see a democratization of data throughout the organization, meaning that more departments will become adept at using the insight that it can bring.

Rather than working towards a central strategy that is created by senior management, day-to-day activities will be based on data and the insights created from it.


Josie King is President, Innovation Enterprise, which organizes Big Data Innovation Summits and many other meetings.