Managing Unstructured Data: The Key For Businesses To Become A Data Guardian

Amit Luthra, Director & General Manager, Data Center Solution, Dell Technologies IndiaAmit is a seasoned professional with proven expertise in formulating, developing and implementing yearly business strategies to ensure attainment of business goals.

It was rightly predicted a few years ago that data deluge will take place and the world will be driven by this data. In fact, as per the industry reports, by 2025, the amount of data that will be generated will reach a staggering 175 zettabytes. It is remarkable to see how companies are leveraging or planning to leverage their data capital to achieve various goals – improving customer experiences; expansion to new markets; increasing productivity of employees, enhancing their digital journeys and creating competitive advantage.

With businesses fast becoming the new data stewards, a shift in the form of data has also been observed. Typically, a business generated structured data from its mission-critical applications, which was used to deliver business value. But, owing to the intervention of technologies such as AI, IoT etc. and other industry trends in the technology landscape, data currently generated is mostly unstructured. All those images, videos, emails, documents and social media content etc. is what leads to this unstructured data.

So how do businesses exploit this to their full potential?

Navigating through the Unstructured Data Mine:
Unstructured data is a goldmine of opportunity that can lead to valuable marketing intelligence. However, the data sets are extremely large and cumbersome. Thus, as companies plan to adopt modern data strategies to yield intelligent insights from their unstructured data, they get stuck with identifying bottlenecks in their
storage infrastructure such as legacy IT architectures, flat IT budgets etc. All of this makes it critical for organizations to ask the right questions: what back-end solutions should be deployed that will help unlock the true potential of data? Will these solutions be able to access data from multiple locations and interpret it seamlessly?

The key to navigate through these blurred lines is to adopt a flexible storage solution that delivers intelligent, density-optimized infrastructure to tackle the most demanding workloads. Moreover, organizations need to adhere to three essentials while deploying their modern unstructured data storage – 1) The solution needs to be scalable in nature and capable of processing hundreds of terabytes of raw data without disruption or a costly downtime 2) It should also be resilient and efficient enough and 3) It should offer intelligent insights that can help simplify data management, and provide exemplary analysis of data sets, enabling customers to deliver better outcomes.

Unstructured data is a goldmine of opportunity that can lead to valuable marketing intelligence

Living it Real:
The waves of data traversing through the edge to core to cloud platforms have been playing and will continue to play a vital role for many industries in the future. These data sets are mission-critical for several verticals such as healthcare, manufacturing, and other digital projects like smart cities etc. For instance, hospitals have been generating data in unstructured forms for years now since health data exists in multi platforms and devices. However, since this data hard to handle for the hospitals’ IT departments, it is often ignored or abandoned in most places. But, if they deploy a solution that provides seamless processing of the data sets, this will lead to healthcare innovations like understanding the patient history basis old records etc. Glancing at the future, a similar scenario could be traced to the development of a smart city. It is a combination of several elements like security intelligence, water management, traffic management, waste management, resource distribution and many more. Deployment of cutting edge unstructured data solutions could help project managers and IT teams with concrete insights and patterns to understand traffic or water supply or other resource deployment that could enhance the standard of living.

Solving the Future Puzzle:
Unstructured data is the nucleus of modern day businesses and leaders need to realize the value that unstructured data solutions can deliver in their day to day business decisions. The future is unfolding itself expeditiously and it will be interesting to see how organizations go around understanding their data. Instead of thinking of destinations for their data, businesses need to think about what the data is going to be used for, who will be using it and how the data will help solve their business needs. Moreover, they need to first adopt a data-first mindset and then deploy modern unstructured data storage solutions for better business outcomes.