Structured forms of data are determined to be of more value than unstructured

A recent study conducted by Clutch discovered that data analysts tend to focus more upon structured data than unstructured. This study was set up by B2B research firm, Clutch. Clutch used a survey to gather information on business intelligence experts. Results found that structured data was used 58% of the time, compared to unstructured data (37%). In addition, internal data was used the most (70%) and IoT the least (26%).

(Results found below)


An advantage of using structured data is that information is more accessible than unstructured. It is easier to input results into a database and search items. IoT and social networks data produce more abstract results, thus they are harder to input into a table. Dean Abbott, Co-founder and Chief Data Scientist of SmarterHQ explains that “Newer types of data are more difficult to use because that data isn’t in a user-friendly form”. The structured data is already in a concrete form, therefore it is a quicker process to apply algorithms and gain values from the data.

The survey also discovered that internally organised data was favoured over external. About 65% of respondents ranked internal data as more important than data that is collected externally. This is likely due to its accessibility. Although Carl Paluskiewicz, Director of Customer Value at Denologix maintains that companies need both external and internal. Paluskiewicz believes that it provides the company with a ‘360 view’, helping owners to understand consumer needs.

The utilisation of BI tools for data analysis

The survey also looked into how businesses use BI tools. It was discovered that BI users tended to use analytics software to analyse statistical data, data management and data visualisation. However, this method of analysis was found to be lacking. Dean Abbott admitted that his company’s mode of analysis didn’t allow for “maximizing the value of data we have”. Clutch recommended that organisations establish clear metrics in an attempt to make full use of their data’s values. They also suggested that companies create a new comprehensive data strategy that will be used to analyse information.

The survey identified 3 necessary stages to consult when selecting a BI analytics solution:

1) Define the degree of data analysis you want from the tool.

2) Identify the level of technical expertise available within your organisation.

3) Determine whether you want to integrate existing platforms with the BI tool.


Edited from press release by Ruby Arenson