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Oracle Analytics Means Smooth Sailing Toward Mission Goals

According to a recent GovLoop survey, analytics can improve the efficiency, productivity, and resource allocation of agencies. Additionally, we have seen countless ways analytics can improve transparency and drive better decision making for government agencies.

But did you know analytics also propelled Team USA to one of the greatest comebacks in sport’s history during the America’s Cup, the historic yacht race? When Oracle became Team USA’s sponsor, Oracle didn’t simply stitch their name onto the uniforms, they provided Team USA with cutting edge analytics technology. The team’s perseverance, together with Oracle technology, allowed Team USA to come back from an 8-point deficit to defeat Team New Zealand.

What does analytics have to do with sailing? Oracle’s co-President Mark Hurd shared in a New York Times profile that the team’s luck changed when the decision was made to switch out the intermediary between the ship’s captain and the small powerboat behind the big catamaran, which held Oracle’s computer. This computer collected 300 gigabytes of data on waves, currents, wind and speed in real time. Analytics allowed the crew to make sense of the data and directly apply it to their strategy in real time. As Forbes put it, “Big Data was the 12th crew member in this race.”

Each crewmember could access the data and instantly make sense of it through a rugged-sized PDA display. This wrist-display showed a real-time feed that was customized to their role, according to Asim Khan, Director of Information Systems for Oracle Team USA.

This is even more impressive considering the quantity, quality and velocity of data processed at the race. According to Khan, 3,000 variables were running 10 times per second, while sailing. Algorithms leveraged information from training runs, past performances, and current speed and gave recommendations based on environmental conditions in real time.

Team USA spoke about the experience with the press and the challenges of persevering through tough conditions. Forbes reported that the team compared yacht racing to “being in a race car on a bumpy road while sticking your head out the window in the pouring rain.” Excelling in these conditions is truly a testament to the hard work of the crew and their persistence against all odds. However, in conditions as tough as Team USA was facing, crew member Ian Burns said, “Oracle technology helped us regain the advantage. That was eventually the thing that made the difference.”

If analytics can help deliver victory to Team USA under the most extreme conditions, it clearly can help your agency overcome the toughest of challenges.

How will Team USA inspire your agency to leverage Oracle’s cutting-edge analytics technology?

Oracle offers an optimized and fully integrated stack of business hardware and software systems that helps organizations overcome complexity and unleash innovation.. Check out their Optimize with Oracle group on GovLoop as well as the Technology Sub-Community of which they are a council member.

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