One important attribute of the increased focus on analytics is that it has become—at least for many organizations—an “enterprise” resource. That is, instead of being sequestered into several small pockets of an organization—market research or actuarial or quality management—analytical capabilities are being recognized as something that can benefit an entire organization. Diverse groups are being centralized, or at least coordination and communication are taking place between them. Analytical talent is being inventoried and assessed across the organization. Plans, initiatives, and priorities are being determined by enterprise-level groups, and the goal is to maximize the impact on the enterprise.
Hence the title of this book. Many of the chapters relate to how analytics can and should be managed at an enterprise level. If there were a set of guidelines for a Chief Analytics Officer—and some people in this role are emerging, albeit still in relatively small numbers—this book would provide many of them. We are not yet at the point where analytics is a broadly recognized business function, but we are clearly moving in that direction.