The Power of Predictive

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The opportunity and insights that are available to all of us as a result of the Big Data explosion are well known.  Multiple times a week, I receive emails with links to Tableau or Qlik or PowerBI dashboards that tell me the status of our pipeline, the impact of our active marketing campaigns and the progress that has been made in following up on leads. I see reports on revenue generated in the last day, week and month for Vertica by the Hour on AWS Marketplace.  All of this is helpful and informative but it’s not enough.  The Big Data explosion has finally generated the volume and variety of data needed to take the next steps – predict and influence. 


Historical reporting that allows us to understand and diagnose problems of the past is outdated.  Using all available data to predict what will happen, and most importantly, guide us toward a positive outcome is the next and most important step.  Predictive analytics is the foundation of the most data driven – or as I like to say, data determined - organizations, companies who have consider data one of their most valuable assets.  But predictive analytics depends on three key elements – accuracy, action and automation.

One of the most popular use cases today is customer behavior analytics.  How can I predict who will buy and what they will buy?  Which of my customers are at risk for attrition?  What can I do to improve my customers’ buying or support experience?   But for me, predictive analytics captures my attention (and my heart!) when you consider healthcare, personalized medicine, and proactive diagnosis and treatment.  One of Vertica’s most admired customers is Cerner, a global leader in Electronic Medical Records (EMR).   Many of you know that Cerner’s Millennium Platform relies on Vertica to analyze more than 6 billion timers embedded in the software itself, enabling Cerner to continuously improve the ERM experience for doctors and for patients while also identifying users who are struggling to use the tool correctly and could benefit from training.  Whenever I am with a doctor and I see her (or him) staring at the screen rather than engaging with me, I say “Oh, I see you’re not using the Cerner Millennium platform – must be hard for you.”  Sometimes I refer directly to Cerner’s top competitor’s platform but I’ll be a bit more polite here. 

What you might not know, is the impact that Cerner is having on one of the most deadly diseases that affects almost a million patients every year – Sepsis. In 2006, the CEO and cofounder of Cerner, Neal Patterson, learned at a very personal level about the impact that a missed diagnosis of early stage sepsis can have.  His brother’s wife, Linda, died from sepsis due to a diagnosis that came too late to save her life.  That caused Neal to begin a predictive analytics journey that today, powered by Vertica, analyzes millions and millions of patient records, uses accurate machine learning models to correlate a wide variety of criteria and research information, and proactively communicates with doctors to alert them of possible early stage sepsis in a specific patient.  This is only possible because the Vertica platform can handle the scale of the data necessary to achieve this level of accuracy and do it in time to take action. The Cerner platform not only alerts doctors to specific patients' status and the urgency of their condition, but it also includes suggestions on the next steps for treatment. The results have saved more than 500 lives. 

Predictive maintenance is another great example of the power of Vertica.  Nimble Storage was an innovative company in the storage array industry that got acquired by Hewlett Packard Enterprise for more than a billion dollars.  While the storage products themselves were certainly impressive, the InfoSight predictive maintenance platform earned Nimble an NSP score of 85 in 2017, a number that not only stuns NPS specialists who believe 60 is “top of the chart” for this hard to achieve metric, but undoubtedly also stunned Nimble’s competitors like EMC, whose own NPS was less than half that number.  I won’t even mention the other competitors … too embarrassing for them. 

The InfoSight platform, powered by Vertica, was able to identify and proactively identify hardware issues which resulted in 80% of all support tickets being opened automatically and 90% closed without any human intervention.  None of this would be possible if the scale of data and speed of analysis were in any way limited.  Why?  Because Nimble Storage analyses more data every four hours than there are stars in our galaxy!  That’s a LOT of data and that volume of data is why the accuracy delivered an industry leading customer experience.   Accuracy combined with real time action resulted in a very happy set of investors when Nimble was acquired.  Everybody likes a $1B+ valuation. 

Accuracy and action combined with solutions that automate, including Micro Focus Operations Bridge and ArcSight Investigate, demonstrate that our commitment to Predictive Analytics is much more than a tag line or a marketing message.  Accuracy, action and automation saves lives, changes the definition of customer experience, and protects us.  I’m proud that we make a difference. blog_powerof predictive.PNGWant to learn more about Vertica? Get up and running in minutes with Vertica by the Hour on AWS or download the Community Edition directly onto whatever infrastructure works best for you.  Still in the research phase?  We’ve got you covered there too! Here is all you need to know about Predictive Analytics powered by Vertica’s Machine Learning and look me up on Twitter if you want to talk more.

About the Author
Joy leads Vertica’s Product Management, Product Marketing and Field Engagement. Her team is responsible for Vertica’s product strategy and all of the marketing content and messaging that educates and informs customers, analysts, media and the Vertica Field organization. Joy is also responsible for employee communications. During more than three decades in the information technology industry, Joy has enjoyed extensive sales, business development, partner management and marketing responsibilities and she has a visible passion for the impact that Vertica is making on the world.
The opinions expressed above are the personal opinions of the authors, not of Micro Focus. By using this site, you accept the Terms of Use and Rules of Participation. Certain versions of content ("Material") accessible here may contain branding from Hewlett-Packard Company (now HP Inc.) and Hewlett Packard Enterprise Company. As of September 1, 2017, the Material is now offered by Micro Focus, a separately owned and operated company. Any reference to the HP and Hewlett Packard Enterprise/HPE marks is historical in nature, and the HP and Hewlett Packard Enterprise/HPE marks are the property of their respective owners.