8 game-changing data trends that will impact businesses in 2018

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The convergence of data management technologies, the increased focus on artificial intelligence (AI), and the implementation of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) will be pivotal data trends that will impact businesses moving into 2018, according to a recent report from Infogix.

“Metadata management and ensuring data privacy for regulations such as GDPR joins earlier trends like AI and IoT, but the unexpected trend of 2018 will be the convergence of data management technologies,” Emily Washington, senior vice president of product management at Infogix, said in a press release.

“Big data has been the next big technology phenomenon for a long time, but businesses are increasingly evaluating ways to streamline their overall technology stack if they want to successfully leverage big data and analytics to create a better customer experience, achieve business objectives, gain a competitive advantage and ultimately, become market leaders,” Washington said in the release.

1. The year of converging data management technologies

Leveraging data requires a number of tools for tasks such as data quality, analytics, governance, integration, and metadata management. To gain the most meaningful insights from company and customer data, businesses will increasingly demand flexible, integrated tools that allow users to quickly take in, prepare, analyze, act on, and govern data, while easily communicating insights gleaned, according to Infogix.

2. Increased importance of data governance

Data governance has become more critical than ever, with sheer amounts of data increasing, business teams gaining more access to that data, and government regulations like GDPR on the horizon. Data governance capabilities can provide organizations with complete transparency into their information landscape, and allow them to fight increasingly complex regulatory and compliance requirements.

3. The continued rise of the Chief Data Officer (CDO)

By 2019, 90% of large global companies will have an appointed CDO, Gartner predicts. CDOs can help businesses navigate regulatory demands, leverage data, and manage enterprise-wide governance, Infogix noted. CDOs can also help businesses manage unstructured data, and use analytics to maximize the value of the organization’s information.

4. Ensuring data privacy for regulations such as the GDPR

GDPR will go into effect in Europe in May 2018, and will strengthen data protection rules for all organizations that touch personal data for EU residents. With proper data governance, organizations can monitor compliance, usage, approvals, and accountability across their organization.

5. The proliferation of metadata management

Metadata—or data about data—will grow in 2018, as it contains information necessary to undersand and effectively use data such as business definitions, valid values, and lineage, according to Infogix. Metadata management can help enterprises support data governance, regulatory compliance, and data management demands.

6. The monetization of data assets

More companies are using a combination of logical, physical, and conceptual metadata to classify data sets based on their importance, according to Infogix. Businesses can then apply a numerical value to each data classification, which essentially monetizes it.

7. The future of prediction: Predictive analytics to improve data quality

In 2018, businesses will increasingly use machine learning to wade through large amounts of data and detect quality anomalies that would otherwise have gone unnoticed, Infogix noted.

8. Internet of Things becoming more real

More than 8.4 billion connected devices are expected to be in use worldwide at the start of 2018. All of these devices are generating data, and potentially offer businesses new insights. More defined IoT use cases are leveraging data, such as that from sensors and drones, Infogix said.

“As more data is generated through technologies like IoT, it becomes increasingly difficult to manage and leverage. Integrated self-service tools deliver an all-inclusive view of a business’s data landscape to draw meaningful, timely conclusions,” Washington said in the release. “Full transparency into a business’s data assets will be crucial for successful analytics initiatives, addressing data governance and privacy needs, monetizing data assets and more as we move into 2018.”

This piece was written by Alison DeNisco Rayome and originally published on TechRepublic.