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Techaisle Blog

Insightful research, flexible data, and deep analysis by a global SMB IT Market Research and Industry Analyst organization dedicated to tracking the Future of SMBs and Channels.

WW SMB and Midmarket analytics adoption acceleration needs external services

Techaisle’s latest US, Asia/Pacific, Europe and Latin America SMB and Midmarket Analytics and Artificial Intelligence adoption trends survey research shows that although 73% of midmarket firms (100-999 employees) and 10% of small businesses (1-99 employees) are using analytics (weighted data), only 6% of small businesses and 27% of midmarket firms are highly data-driven, that is, they have an evidence-driven culture, in which data helps defines requirements or opportunities thus enabling SMB executives to determine the best option for moving forward. Majority of SMB, 54%, are rarely data-driven and rely primarily on the insights and expertise of the senior management. Nevertheless, within the next one year, 23% of small businesses plan to adopt analytical solutions beyond spreadsheets and overall 30% of small businesses plan to engage with an external professional services firms to understand how they could provide assistance to deploy advanced analytics solutions. Cloud-based analytics is being used by 57% of midmarket firms and as compared to only 14% of small business but the intent to use within small businesses is significantly high at 48%.

Within 31% of midmarket firms, IT is being challenged with demand for increased analytics. As a result, overall 35% of midmarket firms are planning to engage with professional services firms to help develop and prepare data management systems, techniques and technology.

The whole product for analytics starts with cloud. 37% of SMBs consider cloud to be an essential analytics technology but when drilled down into midmarket firms, data reveals that 30% of midmarket firms believe that large scale local storage and fast processing infrastructure is necessary for deep analytics implementation.

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SMB analytics begins with cloud and provides answers to business issues

Techaisle recently analyzed 1,116 survey responses that provide insights needed to build and execute on analytics strategies for targeting the small and midmarket customer segments.

SMBs are prioritizing a wide range of improved outcomes within their businesses: improvement within existing operations and processes, expansion of the customer base, profitability, creation and accelerated delivery of new offerings, reduced cost, and enhanced ability to manage the unknown. Remarkably, each of the top SMB business issues can be addressed with analytics solutions – and indeed, SMBs are using analytics to address each today. Overall, SMB analytics investments are being driven primarily by productivity and process improvements with the top two reasons for SMB investments in analytics solutions as increased productivity and improved processes.

Regardless of the business issue, analytics provides an answer. And SMB analytics begins with cloud. More than 50% of both small and midmarket businesses consider cloud to be an essential analytics technology.

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Survey shows SMBs using analytics and Big Data are the lead adopters of IoT

Techaisle survey shows that a strong link between analytics, Big Data and IoT. The connection between IoT solutions supporting process analysis and analytics and Big Data is not lost on the SMBs included in the Techaisle SMB and midmarket IoT Adoption survey. Findings from the research reveal that there are strong links between analytics/Big Data use and intentions and IoT use and intentions and sophisticated SMB use explicitly ties these two together.

Consider the data presented in the figure below. The top left quadrant of the tables shows the proportion of current analytics and Big Data users who have also deployed IoT; at 37% and 47% respectively. There is evidence that current users of analytics and Big Data are the lead adopters of IoT, a finding that is further supported by the fact that 53% of current analytics users and 45% of Big Data users are planning to use IoT in the near term, which will bring the proportion of analytics/Big Data users who are also deploying IoT to about 90%.

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18 percent of US SMBs currently using IoT are in one of two advanced modes

Techaisle’s US SMB & midmarket IoT adoption trends data survey shows that use of IoT today may be low within small businesses generally, and particularly within microbusinesses, it is more widespread within midmarket firms, with roughly 30% reporting that they are currently using IoT. As is often the case with emerging technologies, production-grade usage levels are not yet quite as high as the data would appear to suggest. Detailed perspective on SMB use of IoT is gained by examining the nature of current deployments and the survey finds that there is a five-level IoT progression.

As the figure below shows, just over half of SMBs who are using IoT today are at one of the two bottom levels: they either have a limited number of sensors feeding isolated systems, or are using IoT devices to enable remote monitoring/service/control. SMBs who reported that they are using IoT to “provide basic information” or are in an “ad hoc pilot” are included in these first two levels.

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