Water is also an element that causes life to emerge, hence, earth evolved. Like water on earth, data in an enterprise occupies a huge space and is crucial for the growth, life, and evolution of an organization. We do not need an analyst report to know that our company is swimming in this massive pool of unstructured data and the floodgates have been breached. In this competitive world, the key to success lies in how we can stay afloat and navigate this tsunami of data.
Each company is a data company. Unstructured data can be used to create value.
According to Statista, global data creation is expected to reach more than 180 zettabytes by 2025. In 2020, a record amount of data was created and replicated. In addition, more people worked and learned from home, using home entertainment options more often, so there was a higher growth rate of data than predicted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The average company collects, manages, and stores a lot of data, but much of it is unstructured (as much as 80% of enterprise data, according to Gartner) and siloed. Organizations should make unstructured data accessible and usable to find expansion opportunities, which means leveraging it intelligently.
According to how the data is stored and managed, digital data can be broadly classified as follows:
Image courtesy: MyCloudWiki
Problem with unstructured data:
The digital data generated these days is largely non-structured, i.e., semi-structured, quasi-structured, or unstructured. Unstructured data can be difficult to sort, manage, and organize. Think about the files stored on servers or network storage; there may be thousands of duplicate copies (or almost duplicate copies) of the data in many different formats. There’s no doubt that medium-to-large organizations must manage, backup, and potentially recover terabytes of unstructured data. To manage so much unstructured data is a problem for the IT department, as well as a significant cost to the organization (storage space, backup space, backup time, staff resources).
- Unstructured data continue to grow
According to the Digital Universe Study conducted by IDC, the digital universe generates approx. 4 trillion gigabytes (GB) of data annually, and it doubles every two years. It is estimated that by the year 2025, the digital universe will have grown to forty-five trillion gigabytes of data. Analyzing this type of data will be a major challenge due to the sheer volume of data. The larger the data set, the more challenging it will be to store and analyze the data in a timely and effective manner.
2. What makes up my unstructured data?
Customers are often unaware of what exactly is on their file shares, and those file shares are doubling in capacity every 2 to 3 years. With this the cost of updating their Tier 1 storage, backup, and network infrastructure is skyrocketing.
Additionally, productivity is lost as data aren’t managed and it’s hard to find it, which reduces the value of that data to the company.
3. Could it be relevant?
When it comes to analyzing unstructured data, making sure data is relevant is one of the biggest challenges. Unstructured data from disparate sources must be analyzed. The ability to do this quickly and securely at scale is a competitive advantage. Research by McKinsey indicates that banks using advanced analytical solutions have a 4% – 6% market share lead over their counterparts who do not.
4. Could cloud storage help us solve all our unstructured data challenges?
Many factors make it difficult to migrate unstructured data to the cloud:
a) The unstructured data the organization handles are often composed of millions or billions of files, so migrating them isn’t an easy task without some automation, and
b) Since unstructured data usually exist as files within enterprises, with hierarchies, metadata, and access control, transferring this to a flat data structure can destroy this additional information that’s necessary for viewing this data in the cloud.
Cloud storage can be very affordable, and on-premises object storage is another excellent option, but migrating the data to these storage options doesn’t fix the fundamental problem:
You still don’t know what to do with unstructured data, so you might be making things worse rather than better.
The most effective management of unstructured data relies primarily on the ability to implement these building blocks:
1) the right data,
2) at the right time,
3) to the right location
4) in the right format.
To establish an efficient infrastructure and form a data management strategy, the first step is to identify the right data, because “all data is not created equal”.
By asking the following questions, you can demonstrate the importance of assessing the data’s value, so that you can manage it efficiently and effectively:
- Is it a critical asset that the company can profit from by processing it timely to increase revenue, reduce costs, and improve customer satisfaction?
- Is it a critical piece of information from a regulatory perspective?
- Is it a critical piece of information from an IP perspective?
Problem-solving on a holistic level
Finding the right data is only one part of the solution, and there are plenty of tools to search through the data to determine if it is the right data. But what if you find a holistic unstructured data management platform that provides all the services necessary to deliver all the 4 building blocks. Our platform, Data Dynamics Hub, was built organically and includes two solutions: Insight AnalytiX has been designed to optimize data, and StorageX manages infrastructure to assist companies in not only identifying the right data, but also effectively managing it and supporting it.
Using Insight AnalytiX’s, users can discover, tag, manage, and move unstructured data based on identifying the data that meet compliance handling requirements. With StorageX, you can analyze, move, manage, and modernize your infrastructure to reduce costs, mitigate risks, and automate policies. We provide dynamic data for digital enterprises so that your business can leverage your data to gain a competitive advantage.
Data Dynamic can help you to stay above the data flood that can dramatically impact your company’s ability to:
- Be agile to meet the competition
- Make data-driven decisions instead of guessing
- Maximize the return on your assets
- Fine-tune your infrastructure to ensure the efficient processing of data
- Properly align infrastructure costs with efficient data processing requirements
- Ensure that you are meeting data regulatory requirements