The software used by the Analytics Answers service can analyze a variety of information from social to geospatial to machine data. To remove barriers to adoption, Analytic Answers is available to clients as a service via the IBM Smart Cloud, a subscription-based cloud environment. In addition, larger enterprises will find the capability appealing when trying to quickly ramp up pilot projects on a budget that could benefit from predictive analytics. For example, increasing retail customer spend with highly targeted offers for a new product launch, increasing insurance policy renewal activity by identifying cross selling opportunities, or determining at-risk students in time to address educational challenges.Analytics Improves Finance Department ProcessesRegulatory, compliance, and performance reporting requirements are growing in complexity and urgency, requiring a combination of diverse data from the enterprise and narrative text for regulatory filings such as 8Ks, investor presentations, debt management reports in treasury, and operation reviews. Today most finance departments use a very labor intensive, manual process to create required reporting. According to the Hackett Group, 82 percent of management reports are created using spreadsheets as the primary business application. This process is time consuming, error prone, and every time a change needs to be made the process has to be repeated, opening up greater risk. New IBM Disclosure Management software addresses this complexity by capturing and analyzing diverse finance reporting data using a familiar spreadsheet environment. The solution addresses not only regulatory requirements, but also controllership, investor relations, treasury, and financial planning and analysis disclosure requirements. For example, the software automates many labor-intensive tasks that had been necessary in the past to create management reports and related content. The solution also automates the creation of new reporting templates at the beginning of a financial reporting cycle, the review and approval process, and the transfer of data into these reports from relevant data sources. Last-minute changes to data now require far less work because when one is made, the solution finds all the impacted data points in tables, charts, and text narrative and automatically updates the content. In one major oil and gas producer, these process improvements reduced the amount of time spent by accountants and financial professionals by 91 percent.