The ability to evaluate data on the fly, without planning weeks in advance, has become important for decision-makers who want to push the limits of what big data can do for their company.

As companies increasingly reap the benefits of collecting and analyzing big data, it becomes less of a buzzword understood by data specialists and more of a key component of executive, financial and marketing strategies. As companies buy into the value of big data and invest in infrastructure to support it, big-data project leaders soon realize the importance of not just collecting and analyzing data, but visualizing it. Big data should be viewed in a format that is compelling for particular audiences who believe in big data but want to see it work for their own purposes, in a language they understand.

Fortunately, as the need for big data visualization becomes a high priority for companies, innovations in the field are taking place rapidly. Below are some of the most important data visualization trends observed in the past year.

Demand for Real-Time Analytics

As decision-makers increasingly acknowledge the value of big data analytics in boardroom decision-making, strategic planning, and other long-term efforts, they begin making the connection to how real-time analytics can provide important insight in situations where decisions must be made quickly. Increasing the ability to evaluate data on the fly, without planning weeks in advance, has become important for decision-makers who want to push the limits of what big data can do for their company, from reducing risk to pouncing on urgent opportunities.

Shift to Mobile Access

A growing demand for data consumers to access information where they are has resulted in a push for mobile data visualization options. Challenges in this area include providing clear views of complex data on small screens as well as security issues that arise from large volumes of sensitive data accessed through personal devices.

To address these concerns, providers are developing products that operate using server-side architecture and Web infrastructure like HTML5. Data is stored, managed and provided using a mobile server, reducing the risk of data security breaches due to stolen mobile devices.

While some providers are creating mobile visualization applications for specific operating systems like iOS and Android, some are developing solutions using HTML5, which can be adapted and accessed across a variety of mobile devices, including tablets.

Increased Investment in Big Data Visualization Tools

As big data is decentralized, marketing teams, finance departments, and executives now want custom access to information as a strategic tool for their own use. They lack the time and desire to understand complex interfaces, but understand the potential advantages of using the data. This has resulted in the case being made for increased investment in big data visualization tools, coming from multiple stakeholders in an organization.
This is a natural evolution from the cases made for big data at its onset. Now, as early adopters see its value, they will continue to invest in its growth, especially in visualization tools, in order to reap the full benefits across the organization in areas like marketing, strategic planning, finance, customer service and logistics.

While the demand for real-time analytics, the shift to mobile accessibility, and the increased investment in big data visualization were emergent trends in data analytics in 2015, they continue to be the pillars of what we can expect in 2016. To help decision-makers take action on these and other emerging trends, big data strategy consulting is an ideal place to start.