Big data has become quite the buzzword, but what does it really mean?
Essentially it’s the rapid growth and availability of data that we are consciously or unconsciously providing which, through organisation and analysis, can be used to spot trends and predict behaviours.
Today, so much of our lives are stored, managed and shared online. Data is constantly being collected, both structured (databases) and unstructured (social media, GPS, online, public transport, online, public transport) – the list is endless… and growing.
So is it time we invested in some data analysts in our comms teams?
Big businesses will pay top dollar for the best analysts to help uncover hidden patterns and identify unknown correlations in order to better hit their consumer business objectives.
Although traditionally used as a marketing tool, the same application of big data could be used to better understand employees.
So perhaps the answers to our never-ending questions – how do we keep top talent? how do we create a stronger workplace culture? what are the best communications channels for our employees? – are all there in real and ever-evolving time… if we know where to look.
Opportunity to find these answers through data is on the rise. Software like Radian 6 and Yammer’s partnership with Kanjoya are using the latest technology to analyse data that is consciously provided by employees (i.e. through internal social media platforms) to detect moods and judge feelings by using emotion-aware sentiment analysis – all leading to a better understanding of employees.
Data that can help us generate the best comms strategies, help push it out to our people in the most effective way, and constantly adjust to achieve maximum employee engagement at all times, is the dream. And we are really excited to see the art of internal comms becoming more scientific, just don’t hire any analysts – yet!
What is your business doing to explore the big data possibilities?