Over the last decade, there has been a ton of hype around big data technologies like hadoop, the cloud, and streaming. These tools forced a new learning curve on technologists and business leaders to think differently about data. Putting together the right platform doesn't have to be difficult, but its important to follow some guidelines so your business can succeed with data.
More Data, More Problems
Big data has been around for some time now, propelled by a decrease in hardware costs and the expansion of cloud computing. Software vendors try to define it as a combination of analytics and data processing, often coupling it with AI capabilities. This just complicates the simple idea of big data, and makes "a mountain out of a mole hill."
A Strong Data Platform
Getting your big data under management is the first step to implementing your new or revised business model for big return. Speed, quality, access, and flexibility are primary factors in a strong data foundation for any business:
Speed - Data is generated from many different internal and external sources at a tremendous speed. Your data system should use new tools and services like kafka and spark streaming to make sure you get it in real-time and nothing gets left out.
Quality Control - Big data causes big issues when enormous amounts of data pass through. Knowing what to collect, setting up monitoring, adding failsafes, and enabling alerts can create a smooth, resilient system whether its 10 gigabytes or 100 petabytes.
Easy Access - Technologists aren't the only ones who need to use data. Your business team, accountants, and customers all need the data. Implement presentation layers and access layers that make data readily available without a lot of steps or crazy code.
Flexibility - This pandemic has proven that change comes in many different ways. Leveraging cloud providers like Microsoft, AWS, Google, and others can offer variable flexibility so no matter the change in your business, your system will adapt.
Don't let software vendors create confusion and frustration. Putting together a strong data platform can be simpler and less expensive than you thought if you follow the right approach. Having a good data foundation can bring innovation and AI to your business and customers.