The Future Of Machine Learning-Enabled Analytics

Timo Elliott

Predictive technology isn’t new, but today, algorithms really are taking over! Looking to the future, predictive analytics, artificial intelligence, and machine learning are going to completely transform the way companies do business. Here are a few reasons why:

More intelligent data preparation. Over 90% of average business intelligence projects involve gathering, cleaning, and joining data from different sources. Algorithms can help automate some of this work, especially for more casual business users.

Natural-language interfaces. Business intelligence interfaces can correctly interpret user questions in everyday language via voice or chat, such as, “What’s the revenue per customer this month compared to last month?” and can provide data in sentence form, such as, “Deal value is 20% lower than average for the enterprise segment.”

Automatic outlier detection. Algorithms can spot exceptions and unusual events automatically, such as: “Days sales outstanding in the western region is currently 90% higher than the average over the last six months.” This helps enable the long-term dream of true exception-driven management.

Intelligent segmentation. Statistical techniques can automatically create groups and segments that make sense based on the data, rather than arbitrarily defined thresholds. For example, these techniques can automatically segment crime data into age ranges that match real-world trends, such as 0-14, 14-23, 23-35 … rather than 0-10, 20-30, and so on.

Causality and significance detection. We can use algorithms to determine the key influencers on profitability, or to check whether an uptick in sales is a real inflection point rather than just random variation.

Advanced data sharing. Just as Amazon recommends book purchases based on what we’ve read in the past, algorithms can help identify reports and data that we might be interested in: “People like you also liked this dashboard.”

SAP Analytics Evangelist Andy Bitterer and I will discuss the trends, the biggest challenges, and potential use cases of these technologies on Wednesday, February 7, 2018, at 8 a.m. Pacific Time (5 p.m. CET) as part of an #askSAP Live Chat on Facebook.

Here are just some of the areas we’ll be exploring:

  • Why, after being the “next big thing” in analytics for at least two decades, predictive analytics and machine learning are now such hot industry trends.
  • How machine learning is enabling “self-driving” processes that automate the kinds of complex repetitive decision-making that up until now only humans could do.
  • The biggest new opportunities for these technologies in today’s organizations.
  • The easiest ways to can get started with machine learning.

Please join us, and bring your own questions!

For more on where the future of advanced technology is headed, see Human Is The Next Big Thing.

This article originally appeared on SAP Analytics.


Timo Elliott

About Timo Elliott

Timo Elliott is an Innovation Evangelist for SAP and a passionate advocate of innovation, digital business, analytics, and artificial intelligence.