Shawn Leong’s Interview on 17 May 2023
Overcoming Key Challenges of Big Data
A common definition of big data refers to data that is difficult and complex to process which cannot be handled through traditional means. Using 4 Vs as a guide, big data is usually Voluminous (e.g. billions of news articles), presented in a Variety of format (such as text document, images, audios, etc) and often received in high Velocity (i.e. speed) in the current world. Veracity (reliability of data) is another key consideration when processing big data.
Many organisations are often inundated with overwhelmingly large amounts of data in tremendous speed and businesses need to start recognising that technology is a mandatory tool in order to harness key insights effectively. Given the sheer amount of information that can be drawn from big data, it will be necessary for organisations to set specific goals to streamline and extract precise information based on the company’s objective.
For businesses looking into implementing big data solutions within their organisation, it is imperative to consider the 4 Vs and source for suitable providers within their respective industries.
Handshakes is an example of such solutions provider, where they pride themselves on being the licensed data provider of Accounting & Corporate Regulatory Authority (ACRA) in Singapore, Malaysia, Vietnam and China. Together with their proprietary technologies in processing such data, organisations can benefit from the Handshakes suite of solutions.
Deployment of Technology to Manage Big Data
Handshakes is a data-tech company which focuses on using proprietary technology to process data for clients. While the concept is similar to LinkedIn where network connections of a particular individual are displayed, Handshakes operates in the corporate intelligence space, bridging official government data, corporate registry records (such as details of companies, stakeholders, financials and more) including stock exchange information and displaying these data points into an interactive mind map. Such easily digestible display format allows business users to search individuals or companies, see their connections and quickly identify important insights for decision making.
Apart from its core product, the Handshakes APP, as mentioned by Charles in his interview, Handshakes’ expertise also lies in building other big data solutions through technologies such as Natural Language Processing (NLP) and Machine Learning.
NLP enables a computer to automatically read large amount of data, understand its context and pick out key elements; it does so by examining the linguistics, what’s written and trying to understand each element. Machine learning identifies what is important. It helps understand the audience by training itself on what the readers like (or dislike). To draw an analogy, a common method of training students for math examination is for them to do past-year examination questions. When this is practised regularly, the students can quickly assess whether a question requires trigonometry, algebra, statistics, etc. Likewise, when a computer is exposed to ample content e.g. news articles of what the audience likes or dislikes, it can learn to identify the types of content that is palatable to the end users.
Industry Specific Use Cases
ScoutAsia, a media platform by Nikkei, is a product that has successfully employ the NLP and Machine Learning technologies built by Handshakes. The news portal is able to examine millions of news articles and company data daily and extract for users what is needed to be monitored for the entire Asia region, a task which has been traditionally difficult to achieve.
Likewise for auditors who typically screen through numerous buyer and vendor information with the goal of checking if purchases made are legitimate and handled through proper channels, such due diligence can be achieved with the help of Handshakes’ technology, where any potential conflicts-of-interest or collusion can be flagged immediately.
Similarly within the investment space where stock market, price and companies movements are monitored or even for investigators scrutinising suspicious activities within capital markets, the Handshakes technology allow users to narrow down, react and perform actionable tasks quickly in real time through the data analytics insights provided.
Technology is ever-changing
Business leaders ought to be cognizant that technology is ever changing. Although one may not always be at the forefront of innovation, it is undeniable that technology is improving over the years and your processing capabilities must evolve alongside to forge ahead of the competition. Successful deployment of technology depends greatly on its usage. The key differentiator lies in one being able to identity the right data to begin with, the types of insights required for its business use and the right technology to help extract them marks the difference.
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