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Cloud-based data warehousing at the heart of today’s enterprise - Snowflake

12 Sep 2019
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Article by Snowflake Asia Pacific and Japan vice president Peter O’Connor

The power of data-driven insights is no secret in today’s business world.

Global spending on big data and business analytics solutions is expected to reach US$189 billion this year, according to IDC. By 2022, it’s predicted to balloon to US$274.3 billion.

Here in Australia, becoming a data-centric organisation – one in which decision-making at all levels of the enterprise is informed by facts not feelings – has become an aspiration and a goal for thousands of Australian enterprises.

IDC’s research shows that local spending on big data and business analytics solutions last year comprised around 18.2% of a total investment of $5.5 billion across the Asia-Pacific region.

One recent study suggests local businesses have some catching up to do.

A 2018 report by Melbourne Business School and AT Kearney found Aussie firms were trailing their counterparts globally when it came to deriving real value from their data analytics programs.

Reasons cited for the deficit included risk aversion, reluctance to experiment and lack of access to data professionals who could drive analytics programs forward.

A solid foundation for data analytics

Resolving to become a data-driven enterprise is one thing.

Having the infrastructure and resources in place to make it happen is another.

Historically, organisations that wanted to tap the insights contained within their vast reservoirs of customer and corporate data had to invest heavily in IT and data warehousing solutions, along with specialist teams of programmers and database administrators to manage them.

It was typically a costly exercise; one that was beyond the budget of many small and medium-sized enterprises which lacked the capacity to make large upfront investments in IT initiatives whose benefits were difficult to quantify.

The good news is, those days are gone, thanks to the cloud computing revolution. The advent of cloud-managed data warehousing solutions has removed much of the cost and complexity from the model.

Simplified, cloud-based platforms spell greater simplicity for end-users, courtesy of the fact they are able to access a standard layer for data that has the same look and feel, regardless of where data originates from or is destined to reside.

Performance, scalability and security are all vendor responsibilities, as are upgrades and feature enhancements.

The upshot is a much-reduced requirement for specialist resources inhouse and greater flexibility for organisations looking for a platform to facilitate fast and accurate insights into their most pressing commercial and operational issues.

Doing data warehousing differently

Considering investing in a data warehousing solution to underpin your organisation’s data analytics drive?

Here are some things to consider including on your list of selection criteria.

  • A global, multi-cloud capable solution, delivered as a service
  • Super-fast migration of data
  • A solution that scales up and down automatically, according to demand
  • A simple unified user interface
  • An automatic upgrade and patching program 
  • A solution which supports the extraction of insights from current as well as historical data.

Driving Australian businesses towards a more competitive future

The digital revolution has given organisations of all shapes and sizes access to an unprecedented volume of data which, exploited effectively, can generate powerful business insights which can be the catalyst for increased productivity and growth.

Data analytics is the key to extracting these insights and using them to make more informed business decisions.

Data warehousing remains the foundational technology that makes this possible and, thanks to the advent of the cloud, it’s now within economic reach for many more Australian businesses.