Augmented analytics reveals the hidden side of things
October 4, 2018
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The rise of augmented analytics empowers businesses to find correlations in data that might very well be the critical difference in operational efficiency and cost savings.
Augmented analytics- A reasonable person could assume that healthcare costs are higher for the chronically ill than for the typical adolescent, and the best way to lower costs is to first examine all aspects of care for those suffering from illnesses. But this type of assumption — the kind that ignores hidden factors — can lead companies down the wrong path.
One U.S. health insurance company encountered this situation while examining the cost of care using Salesforce’s AI-infused analytics tool, Einstein Discovery. The insurer’s CFO had always tracked cost metrics based on the sickness of patients — the sicker the person, the costlier the care in terms of staff, equipment and other factors. The company decided to use augmented analytics to see if they were overlooking anything. Big data was ingested and fed to algorithms and models running in parallel to explore all the possible combinations and permutations of factors driving costs, explained Gartner analyst Rita Sallam, who led a recent webinar on the ways augmented analytics is transforming BI.
Surprisingly, the insurance company discovered that children under 12 were the biggest cost driver, because its contract allows ambulance companies to charge per person in the vehicle, and children typically have at least one parent accompany them to the hospital.
“They would never have found that had they continued to look at their data the way they always did,” Sallam said during the webinar. “Their hypothesis was that sicker people tended to drive costs — and there was a relationship with that — but their biggest cost driver was something they never thought to look for, because to do that would have required manual exploration of relationships they would have had to have known about in advance.”
This example clearly showed how the collection of vast amounts of data can make it difficult, if not impossible, to see all the possible correlations. Sallam shared another salient example, taken from a Gartner BI Bake Off, in which analytics software vendors received public data sets on the U.S. opioid crisis and were asked to find the most important insights in that data. A small augmented analytics vendor called Stories.bi — acquired by Workday in July — was the only company to auto-generate a list of the top trends, including the most dangerous route to heroin use through specific drug prescriptions.
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Article Credit: TechTarget
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