The amount of digital data generated worldwide is so vast that it is nearing levels that require new naming conventions.
IDC expects that by 2025, the amount of digital data accumulated worldwide will reach a staggering 175 Zettabytes, with over 75% of the world population interacting with some form of digital data by then. The growth of IoT in the next decade will further fuel this explosive growth of data as over 75 billion devices are expected to be in operation worldwide by the same period.
With so much digital data floating around, it is important for businesses to capture and analyse this data to arrive at insights that will help them compete better. This is why analytical softwares are one of the most sought-after enterprise applications worldwide from businesses of all sizes. However, they were expensive and required quite a large technology infrastructure to operate. This restricted the growth of big data analytics in its initial years, with the benefits remaining confined to bigger companies with deeper pockets.
But the scenario quickly changed with the transition to a cloud-first strategy for big data analytics software. The real growth in data analytics occurred, and what is likely to remain so for the future, is when powerful analytical applications were rolled out as subscription-based services for use by any business.
In the past decade, we have seen how big organisations like Microsoft, Amazon, and Google have invested Billions of dollars into creating some of the most powerful analytical infrastructures on their respective cloud services, opening the doors for millions of small and medium businesses to derive value from their own enterprise data accumulated over the years without burning a hole in their pockets. On-Demand analytics is re-shaping how businesses of all sizes make sense from their data across various segments ranging from customer behaviour, operational insights, marketing, and so on.
Here are four compelling reasons that underline the fact that the future of analytics is on the cloud and on-demand
If you are a small or medium business but have a considerable inventory of digital platforms to run your business, then analytics can help gain valuable insights from data generated across each of these platforms. But the volume of data generated and the frequency at which you need insights will be very low compared to a Fortune 500 organisation. Hence, opting for an on-demand cloud-based analytical service will be the most cost-efficient option as it requires you to pay for only what you use, be it bandwidth or data storage, processing power, reports generated or any resource you consume from the service provider.
Freedom from Infrastructure
Running a big data processing and analytics platform requires quite a heavy arsenal of computing hardware. Additionally, there are demands for storage, powerful networking components, and above all, quite a few highly skilled professionals to manage the entire infrastructure and application. For a small business, there will be limited IT budgets as your core growth areas need more attention and funds. Maintaining a dedicated technology team and centre for running such powerful enterprise applications is not a feasible option. With cloud-based analytics, SMB’s have the freedom to focus on their core business by only connecting their data streams to on-demand analytical platforms on the cloud. In return, they get the required insights to make crucial decisions that can impact their business’s daily operations. The service provider offers and manages all hardware and software infrastructure with zero disruption – all through the year.
Scale at Will
For many businesses, there will be constant fluctuations in market conditions that cause dynamic consumer behaviour. As they operate to mitigate this demand, their digital infrastructure also generates data on a very unprecedented scale. Sometimes, it might drop to extremely low volumes when business is down or peak up to never seen before scales, for example, the holiday shopping season for retailers. With an on-demand cloud-based analytical service, businesses can easily scale up or down their volume of analytics based on their demand for the same. All the configurations like computing hardware, memory, and allocated processing power align with the scale demanded without the business having to spend any effort to do the same. Everything is taken care of by the service providers while the business continues to generate insights on demand.
If a business were to invest in a standalone analytics solution or build one on their own, there are high chances of the computing hardware power and analytical models used for processing becoming obsolete in a couple of years. The market for data analytics is steadily growing, with newer innovations rolled out every year. Companies invest regularly to bring in newer data models, algorithms, AI and machine learning integrated use cases for processing, and much more. Having a standalone system means that your business will have to continuously invest and modify your analytical infrastructure to catch up with the latest trends in analytics. This is not a feasible option in the long run because you will end up investing and focusing more on your technology ecosystem than your core business area. With an on-demand cloud-based analytical system, you get the guarantee of gaining access to innovative features as and when they are rolled out by service providers. It may be included in your standard subscription package or be a part of newer add-ons with highly affordable pricing. In short, your business gets to enjoy the benefits of newer analytical capabilities that have been brought into the market by service providers without having to spend a fortune on software and hardware R&D.
Recent studies have shown that 94 % of enterprises recognise analytics as a key enabler of business growth and a foundation of digital transformation. Leveraging the power of on-demand cloud-based analytical platforms can help propel businesses faster in their journey to digital supremacy without worrying about the associated cost and technical competency. As we move further into a completely data-driven market economy, there is a slice for every business. With the right platform, grabbing it is only a matter of choice.