Make Analytics Great Again

Leon Young 29.10.2018

Don’t worry this blog is nothing to do with Trump, but more to do with how we can get Australian Analytics up the ladder in comparison to our global counterparts.

leons_blog.pngAccording to a study compiled by The Melbourne School of Business and A.T Kearney, Australia is lagging behind in terms of how established its analytics capabilities are, or to put it another way “terms of maturity and impact.”

This wasn’t a small survey either, in fact over 400 global businesses, in over 30 countries were assessed, with an average revenue of $3 Billion US.  Which begs the question what exactly are the ‘Big Boys’ doing in the analytics space and is it a case of sometimes being too big to quickly implement change and innovation in the analytics space? According to the AT Kearney study, Australia is 14% less mature in its Analytics and Australian companies are getting 12% less value from analytics compared to the rest of the globe.

Interestingly the study showed that instead of banking or retailers being at the forefront of analytical advancement, it’s the oil and tech firms who are showing the rest how it should be done and are pushing boundaries of what can be done in analytics. On a global level, it’s the Chinese who are leading the way with advancement and engagement in the corporate world.

Key Insights

  • Australia has a lower Maturity Index than the rest of the world (2.47 vs 2.87).
  • Australia is extracting 12% less value out of analytics compared to the rest of the world.
  • Australia is behind in all dimensions evenly. There is no single significant differentiator between Australia and the rest of the world. 



So, how do we make analytics great again? With more and more money being spent on Analytics, how can Australia be lagging behind the rest of the world? Part of the reason may be due to the risk-averse, refusing to plunge into the unknown and try new things with data. In addition, for analytics to work there needs to be a clear strategy for how to implement it throughout the business. This is why it’s essential that strong strategic analytics leaders are in place, who have the vision to try new things and push the boundaries. Professor Ujwal Kayande, of the Melbourne Business School, said “Merely investing in technology doesn’t bring the benefit that top performing firms obtain. To have a good chance of obtaining that benefit, the firm requires leadership teams who advocate for analytics use across the organisation and an analytics strategy that is driven by the firm’s business strategy.” 

There seems to be an imbalance between technology spend and investment in good leadership who can drive analytics strategy.  Strong innovative leadership is essential and recently IAPA (Institute of Analytics Professionals of Australia) awarded the Top 25 leaders in Analytics across a variety of industries for their contribution to analytics in the areas of strategy and impact; influence and advocacy; innovation and improvement; and team growth and leadership. 

IAPA Top 10 Leaders

1. Matt Kuperholz, Chief Data Scientist, PwC
2. Sandra Hogan, Group Head, Customer Analytics, Origin Energy
3. Jeremy Moon, Director Digital Procurement, Department of Finance, Services and Innovation
4. Ashok Nair, Head of Data and Analytics, QBE
5. Mitchell Prevett, Head of Analytics, Quantium 
6. Richard Green, CEO, Catapult BI
7. Prakash Kuttikatt, Head of BI and Data, Commonwealth Bank
8. Ian Tho, Executive Director (Analytics), Ferrier Hodgson
9. Guandong Xu, Associate Professor and Lab Director, University of Technology Sydney
10. Akiko Hatagami, Senior Manager, Workforce Optimisation, Westpac

It also worth noting that the survey focused on mostly large organisations. There are some fantastic SME organisations that are doing some mind-blowing things in this space, with leaders and teams of analytics specialists who are passionate about the space and all pulling the same direction.

Let's make analytics great again! 

If you are looking for your next analytics focused role, please feel free to reach out to me on 02 8986 3100 or

Leon Young's picture
Senior Consultant | Analytics