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Using Big Data to Innovate

March 31st, 2014 | Posted by JDouglass in Financial Services

In a recent Wall Street Journal article, Randy Bean discusses how Big Data is enabling financial services organizations to innovate in new ways. Whereas data analysis was previously seen as a reactive process, Bean aptly points out that now, “Big Data is delivering innovation through greater data agility, rapid trial and error, and faster learning, resulting in accelerated speed to market, and in new forms of customer disintermediation and tailored customer experiences.” 

Various leading banks are mentioned in the article as using Big Data to innovate: John Bottega, Bank of America’s Chief Data Officer, notes that he’s spearheading “offensive” Big Data initiatives to better understand their customers, develop new products, and maximize profits.

Jim Smith, of Wells Fargo, connects Big Data with multi-channel analysis: “Our customers interact with us in many different channels and there has been tremendous data growth with the surge of online and mobile banking. Each of these interactions provides us with an opportunity to more accurately identify a customer’s specific needs and interests.  From there, we can evolve or improve how we provide a service or develop a new one.”

As banks strive to “offensively” make use of Big Data, they will find that testing new programs is a highly effective way to innovate (something that many top banks have already discovered). Testing an idea to determine where it works best helps support the innovation process by enabling executives to choose profitable ideas, minimize unprofitable ones, and end the debate that often surrounds new product/service/operations programs.

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