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The Big Data shift in a data-driven world

BigData_Guest ‎04-09-2015 10:16 AM - edited ‎05-26-2015 12:03 PM

Blog post by Colin Mahony, SVP/General Manager of HP Software Big Data Group


The simplest things can have the greatest impact.  What if a single word could drive the most successful email fundraising campaign for a national presidential election.  That’s exactly what happened with the word “Hey” in the 2012 Obama campaign.  It proved to be the most effective subject line to drive recipients to open and act on email.  That insight came from data … a lot of data!


We’ve always had data.  We’ve always used data. We’ve produced countless reports from that data.  So what really has changed?  Yes, there’s more data.  A lot more data.  But that’s a small part of a much bigger story.


Today, and for decades, many organizations still rely on a single source of truth – the Enterprise Data Warehouse.  Centralizing the data gives control and ensures the right level of governance and security.  But it also limits the value of that data.  EDW technology, both legacy database software and the underlying infrastructure, is expensive.  So organizations are forced to choose which data they store and which they discard.  Centralized data also means that departmental leadership, who are closest to understanding the business insights needed from their data, are often the farthest away from direct data access. Combine this with the explosion of insights from machine data and the sentiment and insight from social media and other forms of human information, and you realize that despite all of this data, many organizations are still facing an information drought.


Access to all forms of data, without technology limits that force business compromises, is foundational to the New Style of IT.  Access from anywhere (on my phone, in my office, on my TV while I watch the Final Four!) to anywhere (my data center, the cloud, and everywhere in between) is not only what I expect; it’s what I demand.


As we move from reporting to predicting and ultimately influencing outcomes, the commitment to analytics in every business and function is exploding. According to Gartner, over half of all analytics related buying is now coming from the business and increasingly from individuals (Gartner BI Summit 2015). This has a direct impact on the CIO and the IT organization, who struggle to maintain control, avoid silo’ed data sets, and meet the speed and focus that the business users demand.     


Data today is without argument an organization’s most strategic asset.  But it can be, and often is, an organization’s greatest risk as well.  Between regulatory and compliance requirements, security risks, personal privacy and respect, every organization is faced with the same challenge – how to harness 100% of the data for maximum value with flexible deployment and easy access but with the governance and protection that can tip the scales from winning to losing in a millisecond. 


There are so many technologies in the market.  Hadoop distributors, analytics providers, records management suppliers, data protection vendors, security specialists … it’s impossible to count.  But for every new logo that enters the datasphere, you introduce even more complexity.  That’s why an integrated, unified, open and consciously architected platform (not merely a collection of products) must meet these criteria:

  • Ingest all data from all repositories, wherever and whatever
  • Offer in-database storage or SQL on Hadoop (or both!)
  • Apply a consistent policy engine with security and governance at a role based level
  • Provide commercial grade analytics combined with open APIs
  • Engage developers for maximum innovation

The evolution from a single, silo’ed and often biased version of the truth to an open, accessible, unified, governed, protected and commercially viable platform is the differentiator between data driven organizations and those who are struggling to maximize the data opportunity.  Big Data represents a fundamental shift in how we generate, analyze and use information, and new technologies, mindsets, and approaches are required.


Information management, governance and analytics must be deeply integrated. Join me at HP Discover for the Big Data Track Keynote on Wednesday, June 3 at 9:30 am to hear more from two very successful executives who have leveraged the value of their data while at the same time ensuring that they manage risk and meet compliance and regulatory requirements. 

Timothy Kasbe, Chief Operating Officer of Gloria Jeans Company, the largest vertically integrated fast-fashion apparel retailer in the Russian Federation, will share the impact of analytics in Gloria Jean’s break-neck growth in the past five years with 48 factories and 692 stores across 11 time zones of the Russia Federation and Ukraine. Timothy was named Retail Information Systems’ Most Influential People in 2012 and CIO Magazine’s CIO of the Year 2009.

You’ll also hear from Mostafa Raddaoui, Vice President of Trading Floor Technology of the Head Quarters of the Americas, Bank of Tokyo Mitsubishi UFJ, who will share how the bank protects and governs the vast array of data that must be managed and protected without any margin for error. Insights like these are priceless!

Sign up for the Big Data keynote here



Follow Colin on Twitter: @cpmahony




More articles from our Big Data team that you might enjoy:
How does Big Data change physical security? by Joe Leung
Big need in Big Data & Government: Forge stronger links between Federal & the best minds in business by Lewis Carr
Can your healthcare data change your balance sheet? by Joe Leung
Big Data is changing everything by Andrew Joiner

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