SaaS Brief

Reading for the Data-Driven CFO

I’ve recently come across a number of interesting articles that explore how approaches taken by leading companies such as Apple, Facebook, Google, and Amazon affect our daily lives, and I’ve been thinking about how to apply these approaches to accounting and financial software.  So, for CFOs thinking about how they can optimize their business by being more data driven, I'll examine these articles in the following series of blog posts:

Few organizations have the resources that are available to Apple, Facebook, Google, or Amazon; so at the end of this blog series, I will follow up with five practical steps that can be taken by small and medium-sized companies to become a more data-driven organization.

Each post is meant to be a quick, five-minute read to stimulate ideas for improving your business. We’ll kick off with some analysis using Google Trends for the topical areas of big data, AI, and machine learning.

It's Official: Artificial Intelligence Is Bigger Than Big Data
In 2016 it felt like every business article was about big data, but this year it feels like every business article is about artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning, deep learning, or data science. When you do an analysis using Google Trends, here are the results for those terms:

You can see that AI is a far more popular search term than big data and that machine learning has recently bypassed big data. Neural networks and deep learning follow closely behind.

Stay tuned for the next article where I will examine how you can make your general ledger the center of gravity for your big data strategy.

Note: This is part one of a six-part series for CFOs who are thinking about how they can optimize their business by being more data driven.  Here is the full series of blog posts:

• Part 1, introduction: Reading for the Data-Driven CFO
• Part 2, big data and the general ledger: “GLplus” – Making Your General Ledger the Center of Gravity for Your Data Strategy
• Part 3, dashboards and analytics: Twitterize Your Chart of Accounts
• Part 4, invisible AI: Invisible AI: A Glance at Your iPhone and Its iBrain
• Part 5, AI and accounting: The Power of AI for Accounting
• Part 6, strategy and conclusion: The 2017 Journey for the Data-Driven CFO

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