Turning information overload into useful data

The volume of data generated by people and businesses has long passed the point of our comprehension. In numbers:

  • The World Economic Forum estimated in 2020 that the amount of data in the world was 44 zettabytes – equivalent to the British Library 49 million times over
  • The World Health Organisation believes that by 2025, the amount of data generated every day will reach 463 exabytes (one exabyte is equivalent to one billion gigabytes, or one quintillion bytes)

The simplest certainty is that we have more data at our fingertips today than we did yesterday, and we will have even more tomorrow.

So what do we do with it all? For businesses there is only one (deceptively obvious) answer: analyse it.

Data analysis challenges

The initial challenge for businesses was extracting meaningful data from disparate systems. Cloud computing has at least provided a platform for storing all data in one place (even though many individual systems seem actively designed not to communicate with each other), but that doesn’t mean that the challenges are over.

Like many businesses, you may find yourself overwhelmed with offers of a huge array of tools that promise to extract insights from data. Every business, it seems, has a dashboard.

The era of analytics does not necessarily make life less complicated. Given the volume of data that the average business generates daily, and knowing that you are only scratching the surface of the information you hold, it’s understandable to feel that you can’t see the wood for the trees.

Rather than thinking about how to extract value from data, businesses now worry about which data they should be analysing and how to use it. The data analytics process is riddled with doubt:

  • Can I trust this data?
  • Am I asking the right questions of our data?
  • How do I know if this answer is correct?
  • Am I missing something important?

This means that while interpreting data and understanding its limitations is essential for businesses, the scale of the task can be overwhelming.

How we can help

For our BKL Advance business specialists, better understanding of your business means better support for you. A key part of that is analysing data. We’re too curious not to.

We help clients make sense of their data strategy: making sure that the right data is examined and interpreted in the context of the company’s own unique challenges. We do this by following three clear principles:

Data quality is everything. High-quality data is the essential foundation for analysis. As data experts, we support businesses by preparing a set of data for the business that we know is clean and correct: a ‘walled garden’ of data that is not contaminated by unnecessary noise.

Context and strategy are the starting point. Analysing the data that’s collected, and scenario planning, must be driven by the company’s unique context and its strategy. Where the company is now, and where it wants to go, determines what needs to be measured.

Trends and predictions are the most valuable insights. The real power of data analytics lies not in showing where you’ve been, but in suggesting what might happen next. Analytical tools driven by artificial intelligence and machine learning offer the potential for particularly valuable insight if used in the right context.

We are here to help you understand your data and to ensure that you extract genuinely valuable information and insights from this unwieldly resource – enabling you to make better business decisions supported by high quality data analytics. To find out more, please get in touch with your usual BKL contact or use our enquiry form.

You can also find out more on our dedicated BKL Advance website:



Sam Inkersole

In 2022, Sam won the Taxation’s Rising Star award at the Taxation Awards in and was named in the Accountancy Age 35 Under 35.

Jon Wedge

While Jon’s client work focuses on the financial services sector, he also oversees the firm’s assurance service, as well as supporting the trainees following in his footsteps.


Elana joined us in 2017 as an ACA trainee, after graduating from Durham University where she had studied languages. She is now a manager in our assurance team.


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