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Unlocking hidden value: Leveraging dark data with NICE Enlighten

As the world increases the speed and volume of digitalization, data collection has expanded like never before. This data is typically collected for single-use purposes before being stored in a server on-premises or an off-site data center and never used again. This “dark data” collection takes up valuable server space, requires a lot of energy, and produces a significant carbon footprint when environmental considerations are at a crisis point. This storage adds substantial overhead costs for the business and poses a security risk from the unknown, unstructured data.

The challenge of dark data

Dark data, as the name suggests, refers to the digital equivalent of an overlooked attic filled with forgotten treasures. It includes information that is collected, processed, and stored during regular business activities, but is often neglected and underutilized. For example, think of the numerous customer service call logs that accumulate digital dust, hiding valuable insights into customer behavior.

Dark data originates from various sources, including IoT devices, server logs, archived emails, log files, business documents, social media posts, webpages, tables, spreadsheets, and images. A 2019 study by Splunk revealed that 55% of an organization's total data comprises dark data. Moreover, Veritas reported that 52% of the average company's data storage budget is allocated to dark data. This represents missed opportunities and translates into significant financial costs with no return on investment.

Dark data poses multifaceted challenges for organizations across various domains. Primarily, it signifies a misallocation of resources, incurring storage and maintenance costs without delivering corresponding value. This unstructured and unutilized data raises serious concerns about data security and compliance, potentially exposing sensitive information and leading to legal liabilities.

Furthermore, hidden within this untagged data are critical insights that are essential for business strategies, understanding customer preferences, and enhancing operational efficiencies. Failing to access this information inhibits innovation and growth opportunities, as decision-makers lack the comprehensive data needed for informed decision-making. Retrieving relevant data within these vast dark data sets poses a considerable challenge, hampering productivity and impeding effective data governance implementation.

In addition, the accumulation of obsolete or redundant data further complicates systems, making data analysis and scalability increasingly difficult. The inability to leverage dark data also results in a failure to comprehend evolving customer expectations, potentially leading to an organization's inability to meet their needs effectively. Ultimately, the untapped potential residing within dark data stifles innovation, impeding organizations' abilities to remain competitive in dynamic markets.

To address these multifaceted challenges, strategic efforts in data management and the utilization of advanced technologies like AI are necessary. These technologies can aid in unveiling, categorizing, and effectively utilizing the hidden insights within dark data, thereby transforming this dormant liability into a valuable strategic asset for organizations.

Beyond the economic aspects, holding onto dark data poses security risks. Consider a data breach involving information no one knew existed—an unforeseen vulnerability businesses cannot afford.

Fortunately, there is a solution to turn dark data into useful information with actionable insights—NICE Enlighten AI.

NICE Enlighten

For years, dark data has been an untapped resource. However, recent advancements in AI technology have opened up new possibilities. With natural language processing (NLP), natural language understanding (NLU), speech recognition, and machine learning (ML), AI can now handle unstructured data, including audio, video, text, documents, emails, chats, and social media posts.

NICE Enlighten is a transformative solution that can uncover hidden insights within dark data. This is an invaluable resource for businesses looking to improve their operations. By using advanced AI analytics, Enlighten AI can bring dark data to life, providing actionable insights that can optimize processes and improve overall business quality.

Once illuminated, organizations can identify valuable information, discard unnecessary data, and save server space. This can reduce overhead costs and energy consumption. Enlighten AI operates seamlessly on an open cloud platform, uniting your CX offering onto a single unified platform. This agility empowers businesses with a single control point for managing data, optimizing data utilization, and making informed decisions.

The road ahead

Dark data represents a goldmine of untapped insights and opportunities, but harnessing its potential requires a strategic approach. Organizations must invest in centralizing and cataloging their dark data while also addressing data cleanliness and organization issues.

AI-driven solutions like NICE Enlighten offer data analysis tools that empower businesses to navigate their dark data landscape effectively. Additionally, the often-overlooked role of dark data in enriching AI applications through additional training data should not be underestimated. The more data AI can ingest, the more actionable insights it can provide.

In a data-driven world, capitalizing on dark data is no longer a choice; it's a strategic imperative for businesses seeking growth and success in a competitive landscape. That’s why becoming AI ready is more important than ever: to capitalize on the wealth of dormant data. Discover how with our new eBook, Designing your AI ready business: A blueprint for success.