The Intelligence Age
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Data Crunchers No More

The transformation of society in the information age has meant that retrieval, processing, storage and communication of information have evolved to the point where any individual can gain access to required information resources quite effortlessly. The opportunity created by such a business environment derives only from the analysis, interpretation and conclusions drawn from data manipulation, and not in possessing or processing the data. Applying this intelligence factor to information is exclusively a human trait and successful firms will be the ones that recruit, recognize and reward the intelligent workforce. An immediate consequence is that the employment of more sophisticated tools, streamlined processes and even ‘intelligent algorithms’ necessitates that an even more skilled workforce is needed to validate and interpret the system input/outputs. Or to the layman, when you purchase a digital camera that promises intelligent setting of aperture and shutter speeds, you’re normally quite impressed until you try to understand why, in some circumstances, the brilliant sunset you’re trying to capture appears as like your child’s finger painting! As a corollary, the bottleneck in benefits realization is finally surfacing as real culture change management issues: The risk of failure and is increasing shifting to the human element, where phenomena such as data errors, incorrect processes and procedures and ‘passive resistance’ become increasingly common management issues, rather than technology implementation or performance. In other words, employed technology will become much less of a mainstream function to be managed as the active use of it becomes embedded as a routine, almost non-cognitive activity.