August 14, 2014

The $18+ Billion Big Data Professional Services Market

Revenue in 2013 from big data (software, hardware and services) reached $18.6 billion, up from $11.6 billion in 2012 (according to Wikibon), an impressive 58% growth over the previous year.  No doubt the big data market is enormous and growing quickly, but one of the main inhibitors to growth is the lack of professional services firms focused around big data. Software, hardware and diversified IT services vendors are all on the hunt for the same target – professional services firms of scale focused on the strategy and implementation of big data projects.  The market opportunity for these types of firms has never been better.  The drivers behind the strong demand for big data services, include:

  • Few IP/tools exist that allow business users to easily implement and access Hadoop data in an uncomplicated, user friendly fashion
  • Special knowledge is required to navigate all the privacy/security/compliance moving parts and their implication on big data
  • A practitioner of big data is necessary to translate and mediate between all constituents around the table – line of business, c-suite and IT departments – to ensure a successful outcome.

As more companies boast successful Hadoop/big data projects, demand continues to grow, but there remains a divide in the approach to tackling big data projects.  Big data consulting firms develop their own IP and toolsets because simple, business user- focused analytic packages accessing Hadoop data are not yet widely available.  Software and hardware vendors who have developed solutions have a challenging time selling and deploying Hadoop solutions because they need the consultative sale, implementation discipline, and technology skills of a big data consulting firm.  The shortage of big data professional services skills makes the issue even more acute.  So larger product vendors and services firms will continue to hunt for acquisition targets and shore up partnerships to address the growing need for big data consultancies.