Innovate with Data in the Next Normal: Leveraging Cloud Data Management Platforms for Data Protection, Availability, and Reuse

Innovate with Data in the Next Normal

Guest Blog by Archana Venkatraman, Associate Director, Cloud Data Management, IDC Europe


Maximizing the value of data is a foundational aspect of achieving a data-driven organization.

IDC estimates that the amount of data created over the next three years will be greater than the amount of data created over the past 30 years. This new data will hold valuable insights when managed, curated, and delivered to multiple stakeholders at speed.

Some 80% of CEOs surveyed by IDC in 2019 emphasized that “using data in advanced decision models for performance and competitive advantage” is extremely important to their organization. They see a strong co-relation between data- driven insights and business outcomes.

Today, there is a laser-sharp focus on value and cost optimization. As a result, enterprises need to pivot from traditional backup environments that are seen as necessary, single-use, static business procedures to a new paradigm of backup as a dynamic data hub that can provide any data, any number of times, for any business purpose – DevOps, analytics, testing, simulation, machine learning, or app development.

In conversations with IDC, IT teams insist that live data availability, data reuse, and data cost optimization are moving from nice-to-have to must-have capabilities for their businesses. Data protection platforms that allow instant provisioning of usable data copies at scale can be a huge business advantage. IDC estimates that enabling self-service to the development team to clone a copy can significantly reduce test copy procurement time, accelerating the time to market for applications.

IDC believes that the extension of core data protection and management platforms to include application development
and test-focused features can meet organizations’ urgent priorities around the speed of innovation, business value, and
cost efficiency.

No crisis lasts forever and 76% of organizations are beyond the initial crisis-response stage of the pandemic, planning to navigate through the economic slowdown and subsequently return to growth in the next normal. At the same time, the pressure to digitally transform the business, accelerate the time-to-market process, deliver robust SLAs, and find cost efficiency has never been higher.

Nearly 60% of European organizations pledge to increase or maintain data-related tech spend in 2020-21 despite overall IT spend declining during the pandemic, according to IDC’s COVID-19 Impact on IT Spending Survey, July 2020. Organizations now require new competencies such as embedded intelligence, rapid innovation cycles, business resiliency, and digital trust to deliver renewed value to customers, workers, industry, society, and the economy.

Businesses across severely affected verticals such as transport, retail, hospitality, automotive, energy, and manufacturing industries have long wanted data insights to inform their supply chain plans, logistics planning, goods management, cash preservation strategies, and so on. Business, DevOps, and data analysts have also needed fast access to data to help the business make confident decisions.

But many businesses were caught by the pandemic with legacy data management architectures that were neither cloud connected or automated. These architectures hindered quick access to data, becoming bottlenecks that slowed business decisions. At some organizations, refreshing a large database environment could take as many as three days. This needs to change.

Line of business and DevOps teams see value in having instant access to business-critical data in core databases and environments familiar to them such as containers and public clouds. They value the benefits such as consistent application availability, instant recovery, and rapid database cloning as well as features such as automation, self-service, and scale.

During the pandemic, businesses have had to change how they work virtually overnight. This shift has increased exposure to ransomware attacks, accidental deletion of data, and amplified the need for secure and fast access to data sources. Pressure has also intensified on an organization’s data management foundation, including backup, recovery, and data protection.

IDC predicts that by 2023, 70% of G2000 companies will have identified new KPIs to evaluate value realized from data, enabling them to optimize internal resource allocation decisions across the enterprise. A lot of this value will be met by data management platforms that deliver protection, robust SLAs, and data reusability at scale.

In the next few years, upgrades to the latest data management, integration, and analytics solutions built on cloud-centric architecture will drive productivity improvements.

Making data a competitive differentiator is high on the CEO’s agenda. Innovating with data requires a new generation of cloud data management architecture that meets the needs of many constituencies — IT, operations, development teams, cloud teams, knowledge workers, and business units — without compromise.

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