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Government Agencies Adding a Petabyte of New Data, Making no Progress in Big Data | Yahoo Finance

IT professionals estimate that they have less than half of the storage, computing, and personnel resources necessary to leverage big data for efficiency gains, better decision making

Government data is growing and agencies are looking to leverage big data to support government mission outcomes. However, most agencies lack the data storage/access, computational power, and personnel they need to take advantage of the big data opportunity, according to a new study by MeriTalk sponsored byNetApp. The new report, “The Big Data Gap,” reveals that Federal IT professionals believe big data can improve government but that the promise of big data is locked away in unused or inaccessible data.

President Obama’s recently announced Big Data Research and Development Initiative highlights the big data promise – that improving our ability to extract knowledge and insights from large and complex collections of data will help government solve problems. Federal IT professionals agree. According to the Big Data Gap report, Federal IT professionals say improving overall agency efficiency is the top advantage of big data (59 percent) followed by improving speed/accuracy of decisions (51 percent) and the ability to forecast (30 percent).

While Federal IT professionals agree there are many benefits to big data, the technology and applications needed to successfully leverage big data are still emerging. Sixty percent of civilian agencies and 42 percent of Department of Defense/intelligence agencies say they are just now learning about big data and how it can work for their agency. While the promise of big data is strong, most agencies are still years away from using it. Just 60 percent of IT professionals say their agency is analyzing the data it collects and less than half (40 percent) are using data to make strategic decisions. On average, Federal IT professionals report that it will take their agencies three years to take full advantage of big data.

Federal IT professionals report that the amount of government data will continue to grow. Eighty-seven percent of Federal IT professionals say their agency’s stored data has grown in the last two years. The majority of Federal IT professionals – 96 percent – expect their agency’s stored data to grow in the next two years by an average of 64 percent.

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