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Federal Executives See Big Data Initiatives as Way to Improve Decision-Making, New Survey Finds, but Acknowledge Major Hurdles to Realize Benefits

Companies mentioned in this article: Government Business Council and Booz Allen Hamilton

WASHINGTON, DC--(Marketwired - April 03, 2014) - According to a new study from Government Business Council (GBC) and Booz Allen Hamilton, federal leaders see that the tools and technologies of big data offer opportunities for a more efficient, effective government. However, they also admit that there are significant challenges to translating that data into mission-enabling insights, including a lack of data standardization and a lack of systems to support data analytics.

The report surveyed 1,087 senior leaders who work at U.S. agencies where big data initiatives are already making an impact -- including agencies that work in the health, justice and homeland security, and financial services domains. When asked about the goals their agencies have for big data, respondents reveal performance tracking and goal setting (39%), informing decision making (35%), and cost savings (32%) are top priorities.

"Several recent initiatives -- including the Affordable Care Act, Executive Order 13636, and Dodd-Frank -- are pushing federal leaders to leverage the tools of big data at their agencies," said Ted Iobst, Director of GBC. "Although big data initiatives are providing benefits to some, federal executives have acknowledged there are challenges keeping them from realizing its full potential."

In fact, federal leaders surveyed identify a lack of data standardization, security and privacy considerations, and a lack of data expertise as significant challenges to realizing big data's full potential at their agencies.

Additional findings from the report include:

  • More than half of health respondents (53%) reveal that a streamlined data collection process is crucial to helping their agencies realize the potential of their data.
  • Fifty-seven percent of respondents in justice/homeland security indicate their agencies use big data to improve cybersecurity posture.
  • Financial services respondents cite improving business operations and risk/financial management (e.g., detecting fraud, waste, and abuse) as top goals for big data at their agencies. Specifically, respondents cite data warehousing (62%) and data mining (57%) as the most frequently used tools to identify waste, fraud, and abuse.

"Over the last decade, significant advances in big data and analytics have empowered organizations to generate smarter insights from massive volumes of data," said Thad Allen, former Commandant of the U.S. Coast Guard and Executive Vice President at Booz Allen. "However, the growing complexity and diversity of big data will require a new wave of experts to fully realize the business and mission potential of the information."

Allen and other big data experts will join GBC for a special viewcast presentation of the survey results on April 3rd. They will discuss how federal managers are collecting and using valuable data across homeland security, healthcare, cyber security, and financial domains. Click here to register for the viewcast.

For more information, view the full report, "Empowering Smart Decision-Making Through Smart Data."

About Booz Allen Hamilton

Booz Allen Hamilton is a leading provider of management consulting, technology, and engineering services to the US and international governments in defense, intelligence, and civil markets, and to major corporations, institutions, and not-for-profit organizations. Booz Allen Hamilton offers clients deep functional knowledge spanning consulting, mission operations, technology, and engineering -- which it combines with specialized expertise in clients' mission and domain areas to help solve their toughest problems. Booz Allen is headquartered in McLean, Virginia, employs approximately 23,000 people, and had revenue of $5.76 billion for the 12 months ended March 31, 2013. In 2014, Booz Allen Hamilton celebrates its 100th anniversary year. (NYSE: BAH)

About Government Business Council

Government Business Council (GBC), the research arm of Government Executive Media Group, is dedicated informing government leaders' most important decisions through research and analysis.

To see our latest work, visit www.govexec.com/gbc.

Follow @GovBizCouncil on Twitter for trusted research and analysis on the most important federal government and defense trends.


Contact:

Contact:

Carrie Lake  
Booz Allen Hamilton 
+1 703-377-7785 
lake_carrie@bah.com

Ted Iobst
Government Business Council
+1 202-266-7653
ted@govexec.com