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August 2013, Volume 1, Number 4

Internal big data skills trump outside consulting help

Big data projects rely on advanced skill sets that are in short supply in many organizations. That might be a big opening for consultants offering outside help. For example, research organization Wikibon estimates that worldwide professional services revenue from big data deployments will vault from $3.87 billion last year to $15.38 billion in 2017. But ensuring that your organization has ample big data talent is important to the success of big data applications, said Neeraj Kumar, vice president of enterprise architecture at Cardinal Health, a distributor of pharmaceuticals and medical products in Dublin, Ohio, that's in the early stages of working with Hadoop. "Innovation does not happen via consultants," he said. "It happens when you have skin in the game, when you have people working with [the data] who understand the business and understand the problems." Kumar sees bringing in consultants to help train internal staffers on big data management and analytics technologies as a valid way to get started on projects. After that,...

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