With the widespread adoption of digital transformation, it’s
becoming common for businesses to build their workflow on a number of different
apps and tools. In this blog, we’re going to discuss how utilizing big data
analytics can help you to analyze and visualize the data flowing between your
internal processes in order to make
smarter decisions. Gleaning insight from this kind internal data can
provide a huge benefit to your organization, and every business can capitalize on it.
Look inwards for better insights
Most companies focus on external data when implementing data
analytics into their workflows – data which is not collected by your
organization. It’s less commonplace for businesses to look inwards to their
internal data sources – data generated from their own internal processes. Elastic has created an end-to-end
software stack that, once configured, delivers actionable insights in real time from almost any type of
data source. This can include transaction data, information from your CRM,
internal documents, and any other business applications you use internally.
Internal data tends to bear more relevance to the day to day
business decisions we make, and typically are easier to collect. On top of
that, this data is free of cost – making internal data a pervasive yet untapped
gold mine of information. By targeting easy yet impactful sources of data such
as expense tracking or enterprise resource management, businesses can almost
immediately reap the benefits of big data analytics.
The Elastic stack
The Elastic stack (or ELK stack) is a collection of three open-source
applications: Elasticsearch, Logstash and Kibana. These three-tools-in-one create
a pipeline between your applications and actionable insights into them, operating
seamlessly to track events from the applications you use every day. The ELK
stack is capable of handling the vast volumes of information generated by internal
enterprise software deployments, and can be ran as a local application or from
a cloud based service – flexible and scalable, the ELK stack can be capitalized
upon from almost any business environment.
Elasticsearch is a lightning fast search engine which stores
its data centrally. Built with RESTful APIs, Elasticsearch is extremely easy to
deploy and can handle almost any advanced query, meaning you can drill right
down to the specifics of your data. Logstash sits in front of Elasticsearch,
collecting data inputs from different services and applications and passing
them into the Elasticsearch database. Logstash is unique in that it’s capable
of collecting a large amount of data from multiple sources at once, ensuring
your data is right where you need it, when you need it. Finally, Kibana
provides a visualization layer for the complex queries performed by
Elasticsearch, allowing for immediate insights in the forms of dashboards,
charts, tables and maps.
Using Now Assistant for analytics
Now Assistant, the enterprise AI personal assistant, is
capable of pushing analytics data to an ELK stack with little to no
configuration. The information logged by Now Assistant is comprehensive, which allows
for the measurement of user engagement, card popularity, frequently asked
questions and search queries, and more, and can be used to identify potential areas
of improvement. It tracks which cards users interact with quantitatively, and organizations
can use this information to better inform their digital transformation
Once your data starts flowing, you’ll instantly have access
to a vast range of insights – including how your employees interact with Now
Assistant, what they search for, what tools they find most useful and what
features they use less frequently. Kibana makes it easy to create graphical
representations of your data, as well as dashboards for metric tracking. Kibana visualizations make it significantly
easier to spot trends in your data, and also allow you to work directly with
your information without needing to dig into your raw data.
The value of ELK Stack integration
ELK stacks make big data analytics manageable and relevant. You
can query your data in an unlimited number of ways, and discover a
comprehensive view of the internals of your organization. You could use the
data to monitor the health of your systems, or observe whether adoption of the
tool by a specific department is poor. You could identify pain points experienced
by a team who uses a specific application, or even visualize sales funnel
information from your CRM. How you query and manipulate your data is completely
dependent on you and your specific goals.
With Now Assistant, data is collected both collectively and from
individual users. This can be used to make smart suggestions to users – for
example, which notification cards are relevant to them based on their user
role, department or location, or frequently used cards by users with a similar
profile to their own. Alternatively, you could use statistics on popular cards
or requested but unavailable features to drive future development of cards for
Making smarter decisions is mission-critical for any
organization so improving the way your organization operates by tapping into your
internal data with big data analytics is an opportunity not to be missed. Want
to set up your own ELK Stack and connect it with Now Assistant? Read our documentation
on how to get started straight away.
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