Advanced analytics drive double-digit earnings growth at MNCs: Forbes Insights-EY report

Indian firms outperform global peers in use of advanced analytics

Published: Feb 17, 2017

Life is not a template and neither is mine. Like several who have worked as journalists, I am a generalist in my over two decade experience across print, global news wires and dotcom firms. But there has been one underlying theme in each phase; life gave me the chance to observe and tell a story -- from early days tracking a securities scam to terror attacks and some of India's most significant court trials. Besides writing, I have jumped fences to become an entrepreneur, as an investment advisor -- and also taught the finer aspects of business journalism to young minds. At Forbes India, I also keep an eye on some of its proprietary specials like the Rich list, GenNext and Celebrity lists. An alumnus of Xavier Institute of Communications and H.R College of Commerce and Economics in Mumbai, I have worked for organisations such as Agence France-Presse, Business Standard, The Financial Express and The Times of India prior to this.

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Nearly two-thirds of the global companies in India with advanced analytics strategies, achieved revenue growth of 15 percent or more, according to a report prepared by Forbes Insights, in collaboration with EY. About 63 percent reported that operating margins had increased 15 percent or more in 2016.

Companies are also continually investing in analytics, the report says. Over the next two years, more than half of the global executive respondents are planning to invest at least $10 million in data and advanced analytics.

The report Data & Advanced Analytics: High Stakes, High Rewards, also showed that Indian firms by far outperformed their global peers in the use of advanced analytics by senior executives.

This report is based on a survey of 1,518 executives conducted in August and September of 2016. Thirty-four percent of the executives are based in the Asia-Pacific Rim region, 34 percent in the Americas, and 32 percent in Europe, Middle East and Africa.

The survey also interviewed nearly 200 Indian companies, where respondents were C-level executives, including chief executives, presidents, and chief investment officers working in the banking, health care, technology, and telecommunications space. The Indian organisations surveyed had at least $500 million in annual revenues, and 28 percent had revenues of more than $50 billion.

Bruce Rogers, Forbes chief insights officer, said: “The top pain points in successfully imbedding analytics strategically throughout the business continue to be around the human element, not the technology. Collaboration, culture and skills were cited as key hurdles throughout the business life cycle, creating a wider divergence between organisations that are focusing on the people aspects—and separating winners from losers.”

Gautam Bhattacharya, partner and national analytics leader at EY India said that Indian enterprises were setting an example for the world to follow, while also learning from global counterparts who see competitive advantage in the use of advanced analytics more effectively. “More than a third of Indian executives vouch for having a well-established analytics strategy, which forms the core of their overall business strategy,” he added in the report.

The survey also showed that overcoming problems which arise when organisations move from identifying new business opportunities, acting on insights and then measuring the outcomes of their data-driven strategies is a top priority for Indian firms, the survey shows.

But not all the news coming from India is positive. Problems arise over how people perform their respective roles and interact with corporate peers. Some of the biggest challenges—which each impact more than a third of Indian organisations— include the lack of commitment to data-based decision-making or organisational support for data-driven cultures, which impair the competitive differentiation and operating model synapses, the report says.

Forbes Insights is a strategic research and thought leadership practice of Forbes Media, the global media, branding and technology company, whose combined platforms reach nearly 75 million business decision makers worldwide on a monthly basis.

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