Gartner's Top Ten Data and Analytics Trends for 2021

Research VP Rita Sallam, during a recent Gartner Symposium, presented the top ten data and analytics trends for 2021. Here is a summary of those trends.

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 1. Smarter, faster, more responsible AI. Gartner is forecasting that 75% of enterprises will shift from piloting to operationalizing AI by the end of 2024.

2. Decline of the dashboard. Data stories, (not dashboards) will become the most widespread way of consuming analytics by 2025, and 75% of these stories will be automatically generated using augmented analytics techniques. These data stories provide the insights without requiring the user to perform their own analysis.

 3. Decision intelligence. More than 33% of large organizations will have analysts practicing decision intelligence including decision modeling by 2023. Gartner defines decision intelligence as a practical domain that includes a wide range of decision-making techniques.

 4. X analytics. The "X" here is a stand in for any number of words that go before analytics. Gartner said that AI for video, audio, vibration, text, emotion, and other content analytics will trigger major innovations and transformations in 75% of Fortune 500 companies by 2025.

 5. Augmented data management: metadata is "the new black. "Organizations utilizing active metadata, machine learning, and data fabrics to dynamically connect, optimize, and automate data management processes will reduce time to data delivery by 30% by the year 2023.

6. Cloud is a given. Public cloud services will be essential for 90% of data and analytics innovation by 2022.

 7. Data and analytics worlds collide. Non-analytics applications will evolve to incorporate analytics over the next few years, according to Gartner. By 2023, 95% of Fortune 500 companies will have converged analytics governance into broader data and analytics governance initiatives.

 8. Data marketplaces and exchanges. Gartner forecasts that 35% of large organizations will be either sellers or buyers of data via formal online data marketplaces by 2022.

9. Practical blockchain (for data and analytics). Gartner believes that within the data and analytics realm, blockchain will be used for vertically specific, business-driven initiatives such as smart contracts. It won't be used to replace existing data management technologies, according to Sallam. Blockchains are not inherently more secure than alternative data sources. Gartner forecasts that by 2023, organizations using blockchain smart contracts will increase overall data quality by 50%, but reduce data availability by 30%, conversely creating positive data and analytics ROI.

10. Relationships form the foundation of data and analytics value. Graph technologies will facilitate rapid contextualization for decision-making in 30% of organizations worldwide by 2023, according to Gartner.