Big Data and Cloud Computing: A Call for the Democratization of Information Technology Platforms
Data is at the centre of every decision being made by businesses to improve sales performance, reduce cost and support business growth. The explosion of data means that companies and organisations of any kind including government departments and institutions alike – should harness the power of cloud computing more than ever. A cultural shift is required towards the adoption of modern information technology (IT) platforms for businesses to benefits from data as the most valuable asset for organisations. Similarly, data driven investment projects can also help companies to solve problems associated with resource planning whilst creating sustainable business models.
The convergence of big data and cloud computing call for the “democratization” of IT platforms to expand to the masses – ensuring a cost effective and scalable IT services across organisations. Democratising the entire IT landscape ensures that everyone has access to IT services irrespective of the demographics, gender or race. As a result of cloud computing adoption, a large portion of organisations today can be empowered to leverage the best of modern IT platforms without spending huge up-front initial capital investment. The emergence of cloud computing enables a proactive approach on how IT systems are deployed in organisations. This ensures that every member of the society has access to information when is needed. This includes the ability to improve the economies of scale on IT services – permitting low prices and usage based models over a specific time interval.
The Impact of Data Gravity
It is generally accepted that cloud computing has a big role to play in the big data space for the transformation of IT models of the future. However, the biggest factor in determining the processing of big data is often referred to as data gravity as opposed to elasticity (a term mostly used to characterize cloud computing). In contrast, coined by Dave McCrory in 2010, data gravity describes the rate at which services, applications, and even customers are attracted to data increases as the mass of the data also increases. Hence, there is a consensus amongst business leaders which suggests an urgent need to move and allocate IT resources on various cloud computing platforms wherever the bulk of the data has landed. According to Dave McCrory, data gravity is moving to the cloud and so as the data analytics and visualisation tools are increasingly moving to the cloud-based IT platforms. In other words, moving IT resources to where data is located impacts workload performance and user experience across organisations involved with big data projects.
Today, companies of any size can afford computing power, storage capacity, memory or computing resources and IT platforms designed to suit the specific business needs. Through the adoption of cloud computing, this means businesses can now enjoy high performance powered machines according to the workload required to be delivered during that specific period. Cloud computing requires no up-front capital investment. Therefore, IT resource planning becomes less of an issue for the organization. Companies using cloud computing only pay for the IT resources based on subscription fee services – pay as you grow business model. In other words, cloud computing enables businesses with a viable option to build IT platforms at low costs with very little working capital.
Monetizing Big Data Projects
Analytics offers organisations the ability to draw business insights from big data using modern business intelligence tools. Put differently, analytics help organisation to drive significant business value from its big data investments projects. Through the adoption of analytics best practices, organisations of any kind are able to review the business strategy using data of any type, and further improve efficiencies – high productivity outcomes and low-costs. This has resulted in companies, organisations and institutions developing a keen interest to use data to extract a meaningful insight on how the users interact with their products, applications and services.
Basically, analytics employs big data and cloud computing, together with modern visualizations tools allowing businesses to:
- Improve efficiencies and business value.
- Increase productivity outcomes and profitability.
- Optimize cost of production and working capital.
By adopting modern visualisation tools together with advanced analytics platforms, means:
- Saving money on IT experts or consultation fees.
- No need to spend huge sums of money on traditional research projects.
- Gaining business insight from data in days, hours or minutes rathers than waiting for weeks, months or even years for the completion of a research project.