Industry Insights | How Big Data is Changing Our Workplaces

Man standing at desk holding phone next to laptop

The term “big data” is tossed around quite a bit these days, but what does it really mean? In actuality, its definition fits its terminology: big data refers to large volumes of data. Essentially, these refer to the massive volumes of data that travel in and out of businesses on a daily basis. They can refer to structured or unstructured data. The most important takeaway when it comes to big data is how businesses use it, and what they do with that knowledge. You may have a fountain of reports and analytics in front of you, but if you’re not sure what to do with that information to boost productivity and to increase efficiency at your workplace, then unfortunately the data isn’t very useful.

Big data is thought of in three different ways: velocity, volume and variety. Information can come at you quickly, so “velocity” refers to data coming at you with a high rate of speed. There can also be a lot to sift through with big data, so therefore, “volume” is a term associated with it. Big data can be in many different formats as well, so “variety” is another term. Companies such as 4SITE can help look through big data for you to help you come to decisions when it comes to your office space, leasing and optimization.

Big Data Increases Productivity and Improves Retention

Using big data in the most efficient ways is changing our workplaces. Having programs that are able to run analytics, such as data-driven performance management, aren’t just watchdog programs to catch when your employees are making mistakes. These are company tools that are advantageous for everyone and can help all improve. Especially when we’re living in a post-COVID world where the majority of your workforce still may be working from home, using performance management tools can help keep your staff on task. These types of tools also effectively narrow the performance gap, and employees perform better, whether they’re physically in the office, working remotely or are on a hybrid schedule.

Analytics also help keep employees engaged. Let’s face it — whether we’re watching a movie or at work, no one likes being bored. And employees who aren’t bored simply perform better. Employees who perform better are more content at their jobs overall, which leads to better employee retention, which ultimately leads to a better situation for everyone involved.

Company Brand Improvement and Big Data

We often have great difficulty having insight on how others view us, and this remains true from a company and business standpoint as well. It can be hard to get a gauge on what customers or potential clients think of a company’s brand. Big data can assist with this also. Some of the ways analysts use big data here is noticing when a customer is making a purchase (point-of-sale) on a website and what ad the customer was viewing beforehand. Analysts use big data in the supply chain, in product development, and to see how customers and potential customers react to brands or brand changes. These analytics are then reviewed. Sometimes it’s even more important to find out quickly what doesn’t work as compared to what does work. 4SITE is trained in reviewing analytics and relevant data for when you’re trying to make decisions concerning your office space or space optimization.

Examples of Big Data in Action

Big data is more than pages of reports, with analysts making flow and pie charts, delivering their results and recommendations to C-level executives. There are many more examples of big data all around us. It is the use of all types of large volumes of data — so in many cases, big data can help protect us as well. Some places where big data is used include:

  • The banking sector. Many types of sensitive and secure data are processed daily and could be disastrous if they fell into the wrong hands. Big data can help to prevent credit card theft and fraud and money laundering. It can also be used in risk mitigation, business clarity and to prevent the alteration of personal information.
  • The government sector. Similarly to banking, big data can be used to prevent the alteration of personal information and to protect against welfare and voter fraud. It is also a big part of cybersecurity.
  • The insurance industry. Big data is used in many aspects of the insurance industry, including the collection of information and fraud detection.
  • In education. When it comes to education systems, big data can be used to implement grading systems, to create coursework and to customize learning programs, particularly for remote learning.
  • The leasing industry. Big data helps with lease management systems so that more informed decisions are made. Big data can also pull from social media to help evaluate commercial and residential leases. 4SITE can help you make these important leasing decisions by assessing how your employees are interacting with workspaces to improve safety, productivity and staffing needs.

Big Data and the Landscape of the Future

Big data has already taken on a huge role when it comes to making our workplaces more efficient and productive and helping us reach crucial decisions when it comes to how we conduct our jobs. But what does the future hold? It’s likely that, going forward, the Chief Data Officer (CDO) will have a more vital role in companies going forward. This is a relatively new position, but as the significance of big data grows, expect this role and that of “Data Scientist” to be trending upward. Cloud management will also continue to grow as the volume of data gets bigger, and its capacities will need to expand with that growth. Voice-based data will also trend upward, along with faster processing. As you navigate your future decisions, 4SITE is here to help with some of your most important ones.


1. big-data-2020-future-growth-challenges-big-data-industry
2. big-data-trends
3. six-ways-big-data-has-changed-the-workforce
4. big-data-definition-importance-examples-tools
5. winning-big-with-big-data-how-leasing-companies-can-reap-the-benefits