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All about Diagnostic Analytics

  • Ashesh Anand
  • Apr 20, 2022
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It's crucial for business success to figure out what's behind trends and occurrences. Diagnostic analytics is intended to help you accomplish that goal. It assists firms in delving into data to determine what is causing patterns and abnormalities, such as a sudden loss in revenue, a change in client behavior, or an increase in expenses. 


As a result, businesses can make better judgments about how to solve challenges and grow their businesses. Diagnostic analytics expands on descriptive analytics to help you understand why something happened in the past. 


The term "diagnostic analysis" is frequently interchanged with "root cause analysis." Processes like data discovery, data mining, and drill down and drill through are all part of it.


What Is Diagnostic Analytics and How Does It Work?


Diagnostic analytics is a type of analytics that tries to figure out why something happened. Companies can acquire insights into the reasons for patterns they've noticed in their data by applying diagnostic analytics. Data drilling and data mining are two strategies that can be used in diagnostic analytics. 


Companies may need to evaluate various data sources, including external data, to understand the core cause of trends. Diagnostic Analytics refers to problem-solving activities that offer considerable value to the desired result while also presenting the remedy to the problem. 


This entails digging deeper into data to determine not only what happened, but also why it happened. Diagnostic analytics is also known as root cause analysis because of its emphasis on cause and effect.


Diagnostic analytics, like descriptive analytics, relies on previous data. Its distinguishing trait, however, is that it seeks to detect and explain anomalies and outliers. Diagnostic analytics makes use of a variety of methods, including probability theory, regression analysis, clustering analysis, filtering, time-series analysis, and more. 


But it's not all about the numbers. It entails thinking beyond the box, examining external factors that may be influencing the patterns in your data, locating new sources to aid in the construction of a larger picture, and then comparing your conclusions to the original dataset.


Benefits of Diagnostic Analytics


  1. Every business is increasingly reliant on data. By turning your complex data into visualizations and insights that everyone can understand, diagnostic tools will help you get the most out of it.


  1. Diagnostic analytics enables you to extract value from your data by posing the proper questions and conducting in-depth investigations into the responses. This necessitates a flexible, agile, and adaptable BI and analytics platform. Then you'll be able to get answers that are tailored to your company's unique difficulties and prospects.


  1. Gaining a deeper knowledge of a company's business performance might help it reproduce its success and address any issues. Diagnostic analytics aids businesses in gaining a better understanding of the internal and external elements that influence their results. 


  1. It provides a more complete view of each circumstance, allowing organizations to make more informed decisions. If a corporation establishes that a particular online marketing campaign is responsible for increased sales of a major product, it can devote additional resources to that campaign and launch similar efforts for other items.


Also Read | Embedded Analytics


Results of Diagnostic Analytics


There are usually several contributing factors to each particular trend or event. Diagnostic analytics can disclose a whole range of reasons, giving you a thorough picture of the situation. You can also determine which factors have the greatest influence and focus on them. 


You'll utilize some of the same approaches as descriptive analytics in diagnostic analytics, but you'll go deeper with drill-down and correlations. You may also need to use external datasets to supplement your analysis.


Process of Diagnostic Analytics


The diagnostic analytics approach for identifying the core cause of an issue or trend usually has three steps.


  1. Identify the anomalies


When you initially look at some events and trends, they may not make sense. You must diagnose these occurrences in order to determine the factors that led to them.


  1. Dig further into the information


Not all data will be valuable for diagnostic analysis, and it may not be evident which data may assist in identifying the reasons for an anomaly. 


To do so, the analyst must investigate not only existing datasets but also other datasets that explain a comparable anomaly and determine how they can aid in diagnosing the related phenomenon. The necessary data can then be identified.


  1. Establish Causal connections


Establish causal connections. The relevant data can then be subjected to data analysis techniques in order to find hidden linkages that contributed to the anomaly. Probability theory, regression analysis, filtering, and time-series data analytics are some of the techniques that can be applied.


The specific technique or techniques to employ are determined by the circumstances. Data mining is one example. Data mining integrates machine learning, statistics, and database system administration to find patterns between variables in a dataset. 


Data mining is critical in identifying previously unknown patterns that will help explain what caused a specific event to occur, since diagnostic analysis is frequently used when an unexpected event or behavior happens.


Also Read | Probability Distribution Function

The image depicts the workflow and steps involved in Diagnostic Analytics.

Workflow of Diagnostic Analytics

Purpose and Applications of Diagnostic Analytics


  • As previously stated, Diagnostic Analytics' primary goal is to identify the variables and events that lead to the results of previous events and states. When performing Diagnostic Analytics, data analysts go deep into the data in search of patterns, trends, and hidden correlations between variables, relying on both internal and external sources to gather the necessary information.



Data mining, data discovery, drill-down, drill-through, statistical analysis, algorithms, principal component analysis, probability theory, filtering, sensitivity analysis, and time-series data analyses are common approaches and tools used in Diagnostic Analytics.


  • Diagnostic Analytics can be used to detect abnormalities, determine causal relationships, isolate trends, and alert users to possible problems as they develop, in addition to discovering hidden correlations and connections between data.


  • Diagnostic analytics offers a wide range of applications in areas such as retail, manufacturing, finance, and healthcare. This type of analytics enables business executives to extract critical information from their data by translating it into understandable insights and visualizations that anybody can use.


What other Types of Analytics are there?


Descriptive analytics, diagnostic analytics, predictive analytics, and prescriptive analytics are the four basic forms of data analytics used by analysts. Let's take a quick look at the other three categories of data analysis and how they fit into the broader picture.


  1. Descriptive Analytics


As previously said, descriptive analytics is often the first step in the process. Analysts will examine previous data and create visuals to assist provide a clear picture of what has already occurred in this step.


  1. Predictive Analytics


As the name implies, predictive analytics is concerned with forecasting future events based on data finds and understanding what led to such outcomes. Computer modeling and machine learning are commonly used in predictive analytics to predict future results.


  1. Prescriptive analytics


Prescriptive analytics is the final step in the analytics process, in which teams learn what they should do based on the projections generated by the predictive analysis. AI is advancing to assist in this stage of sophisticated analytics.


Examples of Diagnostic Analytics


  1. Retail


A store that sells environmentally friendly products recently saw a significant increase in revenue from one state. During the investigation, the company discovered that the increase was due to an increase in sales of a single product – a canvas tote bag. 


The cause was discovered through research: the state's governor had approved a bill making plastic shopping bags illegal, leading reusable bag sales to skyrocket.


  1. Healthcare


Diagnostic analytics can be beneficial in a variety of industries, including manufacturing, retail, and health care. Companies can utilize diagnostic analytics to determine why an incident occurred and then use that information to generate remedies and predictive models for the future.


Diagnostic analytics can help with a variety of aspects of health care, including the essential function of diagnosing medical issues. Descriptive analytics, for example, can provide answers to inquiries like how many patients were admitted to the hospital last month. 


And how many of them came back within 30 days? After all, compensation may be contingent in some situations on readmittance rates. Descriptive analytics can be used to quantify occurrences and emphasize topics like how hospital resources are spent, as well as model illness diagnosis rates.


Anomalies can be found by comparing the data to historical trends, and then the job of discovering causal linkages can begin. Finding anomalies is the first step in using prescriptive analytics to tackle problems.


  1. Human Resources


According to a company's annual hiring report, one department employed more employees than any other, but there was no net growth in the department's staff since it was losing workers at the same rate as it was hiring. 


When the data was examined further, it was discovered that many of the vacancies were for a specific team that paid its employees less than the industry average. The information was utilized to analyze pay scales, interview personnel, and take other retention strategies.


  1. Manufacturing


A contract manufacturer discovered that a valued sort of machine had begun to malfunction on a regular basis. The organization noticed that standard software updates had been deployed the day before utilizing diagnostic analytics to inspect the machines' logs. 


The update was identified as a possible cause of failure. It found the source of the problem by deleting the software, which solved the issue.


Also Read | Best Predictive Analytics Tools


Any type of analytics, including Diagnostic Analytics, will undoubtedly be beneficial to any company. Diagnostic Analytics, like the other three categories of analytics, aids firms in improving their performance on a variety of levels.


It analyses data in depth to find connections, find anomalies, and evaluate causality, resulting in a more accurate picture of a company's activity and highlighting new, previously undiscovered prospects for growth and optimization.


Ask yourself what you exactly want from a data analytics solution, what specific answers you want to receive from it, and whether that specific analytics solution would be able to deliver all the answers you need from your data to see if diagnostic analytics would be beneficial to your firm

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