Big data doesn’t have to be intimidating. Whether by air, land or sea transportation and logistics already generates and processes large data sets on a regular basis. The prospect of dealing with even larger amounts of data and using increased computational power to analyse it – the opportunity that 'Big Data' presents, is exciting progress.
It is connectivity that continues to fuel the data fire and make possible exciting new transport applications. As the internet of things transitions from buzzword to reality, vehicle to vehicle and vehicle to infrastructure communication are the key themes that in turn cascade to endless innovations from driverless freight convoys and electric car charging lanes to asset monitoring and harnessing kinetic and solar energy. The future trajectory of the transport sector is increasingly data driven and data hungry.
DWF's report on 'Why transport is key to economic prosperity'
highlights the ongoing technological revolution in transport with the overwhelming majority of survey respondents agreeing that technology is one of the most important business levers. Fortunately, there are numerous opportunities to get ahead of the Big Data curve using existing technology, to enable some of the benefits to be reaped now. Telematics is such an example where data from current devices, which are already widespread across the transport sector, can be harnessed more effectively.
Is the full potential of the data being unlocked? Telematics data is often used to track assets but what about other applications? Reducing insurance claims costs, monitoring fuel efficiency, route optimisation or risk avoidance. The chances are there is additional value within your current data.
Advanced data analytics such as predictive analytics is another current technology that can accelerate the benefits to be gleaned from existing data. From improving traffic flows and reducing congestion to identifying fraud and leakage, predictive modelling can tap into hidden benefits within data that already exists.
However, coupled with the opportunities that Big Data presents is a requirement to ensure compliance with privacy and data protection law. This is brought into sharp focus by the GDPR. From implementing the new data portability requirements and adopting pseudonymised techniques to clarifying mandatory data breach notification processes, this is another area where embracing the potential of existing data sets and embedding privacy by design into current processes now can propel businesses ahead of the curve.