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Evolution of Research Solutions and Data Analytics


Published on Jun 10, 2019

A research process produces new insights that help in proving a hypothesis ‘true’ or ‘false’. For research and analytics, modern-day solutions and techniques help in making informed decisions and relay valuable insights. The process starts with the ideation or defining a theme for research, backed by a review of previous research findings and citations. A hypothesis is developed based on an extensive evaluation of the research proposition formed.

The main objective of global research companies is to remain competitive. Market research and analytics companies provide valuable information that helps to identify and analyze the market needs, the market size, and the varying level of competition. Market research methodologies include qualitative techniques such as focus groups, in-depth interviews, and ethnography as well as quantitative techniques such as surveys (consumer or business decision-maker focused) and parallel review and analysis of secondary data gathered through primary sources. Research and analytics solutions are designed by consultants across industry sectors, which become a go-to for strategic, accurate research insights that are integral to business decision-making.

Global research and analytics companies are client-focused, knowledgeable in their approach, and deliver insightful analyses, recommendations, and advice. These transform data into insights and add value to the business where the strategy in itself is customized according to research objectives. The medium through which data is collected has changed globally – from being the conventional pen and paper, which still finds relevance, to self-administered online interviews, participation through smartphones and tablets, and through digital and social networking sites. Technology has also made online board discussions, webinars, podcasts, and video conferencing possible. The increasing application of Artificial Intelligence (AI) in various domains has attracted great research interest in recent years. There is historical evidence (dating back to 1977) that AI was an important business tool in some people/thought leaders’ minds even four decades ago.

Data Analytics is based on statistics. ‘Data’ and ‘Analytics’ have been the most commonly used words in the last two decades while discussing research and data analytics services. It is essential to know why they are inter-related, how their roles in the market are currently evolving, and how they are reshaping businesses and business practices. The advent of artificial intelligence, machine learning, and deep learning is profoundly going to change knowledge work and business ethos.

Services provided by data analytics companies have been accelerated by radical advancements in:

  • Large-scale Internet connectivity and access
  • Data warehousing techniques
  • Data analysis and mining algorithms

Traditional data analytics services, the initial phase of data analytics, were derived from relatively small and structured data sets. Analytics here worked as a strategy, but the decision-making process is still dominated by intuition.

While the burgeoning online retail industry leverages data analytics for demand forecasting and merchandising, the financial industry benefits from data analytics in credit and risk proposition, the healthcare industry in drug trials and experimentation, and the telecommunications industry in product subscriptions. Within each of these industries, data analytics contributes to marketing and sales promotions, customer engagements, and distribution. Data analytics primarily included excel-based dashboards, but the entire process has undergone significant transformation. Tableau, Qlik View, and Power BI have gained prominence over the years and are now popular with companies offering research and analytics services.

The parallel drawn between research solutions and data analytics is justified to an extent as both are interdependent. With research being the main source at the fulcrum, analysis of data through various analytical tools and creation of other assets such as infographics and whitepaper revolve around it.