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Open Data for Business Intelligence (BI)

Jun 23, 2020 | Business Intelligence, Digitalization Trends

There was a time when organizations would dedicate abundant amounts of  their energy and resources towards the acquisition and management of  data to serve their business goals. But ever since the evolution of  Internet, corporations have been saved from this timely ordeal, as  access to nearly all types of data has become seamless. Businesses are  now starting to feel the benefits of open data  in synchronization with their private data and are collaborating on a  whole new level to acquire state of the art business models, improved  revenue streams, innovative products and services, and a competitive  advantage over their business rivals.

What is open data?

Open data refers to those data sources that are easily accessible to  individuals and organizations alike. Free from the legal restrictions of  copyrights, patents, and trademarks, open data is a resource pool of free and reusable data  and information. The aim of open data is to bring justice to the  concept of knowledge being free and that everyone should have  unrestricted access to certain data that they can use, share, and  forward without being charged for. Backed by several governments  worldwide, open data is used by public and private sectors and has been a  transformative enabler for the education, healthcare, logistics,  energy, finance, and real estate industries, among others.

What are the available open data types?

Generally, open data is made available for universal use by governments  and governmental institutions. For instance, many governments today are  developing the framework for smart cities. It is a given that smart cities need open data governance.  How else would the vision for a high-quality life and a self-functional  city be fulfilled? Open data is also provided by non-governmental and  non-profit organizations.

Open data encompasses various facts, theories, findings, and ideologies, and is of the following types:

Scientific data – data that is generated by scientific research, studies, projects, and findings.

Geospatial data – data and information that represents the size, shape,  and location of physical objects situated anywhere on the planet.

Transport data – data on public and private transportation systems, routes, and movements of goods and services.

Financial data – data such as government accounts, national expenditure,  gross revenue, financial information of personal and business entities,  and information on the stock and share market.

Environmental data – data on ecosystems, emissions, habitats, pressures, pollutants, and industrial activities.

Why is open data used for business intelligence?

Today, irrespective of their size, companies are utilizing open data  resources for a variety of purposes. The main reason why businesses are  turning to open data is because sometimes leveraging big data can be a  time-consuming and frustrating task. Apart from being free from  restrictions, open data can be reused, redistributed, and can provide  immediate information and insights. This is especially beneficial for  small and medium-sized enterprises that need to kick start their  ventures quickly, but lack an initial funding of time and resources. For  instance, you’re a logistical company that needs to know the best  routes for travel and delivery. In that case, you need detailed  information on local, regional, or national data on roads and routes.  Similarly, if you need to know the tastes and preferences of a target  audience, you can find open data sources on demography and population  levels. This paves the way for accurate target marketing and enhances  customer satisfaction. Usually, open data is merged with in-house and  private datasets. This hybrid approach reduces data acquisition and  management costs and cuts down on overall company expenditure. Companies  also have regular access to changing governmental services and  policies, and its impact on society. This way their business  intelligence processes are revamped and fine-tuned to serve the evolving  needs of the people. Open data is comparatively cheaper than private  data sources and is a secure platform for data analytics. It is also  transparent, flexible, and scalable, as it is constantly updated and  modified.

Open data lays down an array of advantages for businesses. However, in  our opinion what works best, is when organizations deploy a combination  of several data sources. An integrated approach of open data and private  data can lead the way towards untapped information and insights, and  provide a multitude of opportunities for corporations to delve into.

 

 

 

Original Article by Allerin / Naveen Joshi/ 2018

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