Unlocking the Full Potential Of the Growing Data Sprawl

The road ahead for organizations trying to fully harness the power of data will certainly have challenges, but there's also a tremendous amount of hope

By
Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.
You're reading Entrepreneur India, an international franchise of Entrepreneur Media.

The amount of digital data in the universe is growing at an exponential rate and it is changing the world around us. In fact, businesses today can only prosper by embracing these new and unique business opportunities powered by this wealth of data and the insight it provides. And deploying the right technology appropriately will have a huge impact on doing this effectively.

Unsplash

Evolution of Data Management

With this unprecedented explosion of information, the ability for enterprises to capture, collate and analyze organizational data is becoming simultaneously more important and difficult to manage. And yet, even though the volume, the variety, and strategic importance of data have rapidly evolved over the last two decades; many enterprises haven’t changed how they manage it. And one of the most critical issues here is the continued use of legacy relational databases, which are too rigid and don’t scale well enough to handle the demands of modern application development.

Solving this problem was the entire reason for the “NoSQL” movement in the late 2000s and the invention of the document-oriented database in the first place. The document database has quickly matured beyond a mere 'NoSQL' database to become a standard in many organizations. The reason is that a document database allows developers to store information in highly detailed documents that contain a range of information—from numbers and character strings to photos and videos—all collated in one document. They’re more flexible because they can digest multiple types of information at once; they’re also faster because when the database is queried, it doesn’t have to read several tables to find an answer—it can recall data in what is essentially real-time since the data that’s accessed together is stored together in a document.

Why Scaling of Data Is Crucial For Organizations 

As organizations grow, their applications must scale to match and exceed that growth rate. While traditional applications are often effective, the monolithic architecture that underlies them doesn’t always scale easily as the changing environment needs them to.

Perhaps the solution to this problem, managing large sets of data, is not more resources, but an application data platform. Today, the fundamental requirements of various data sets aren’t just changing, they’re converging. And this a reversal of the trend of silos and specialized tools over the last 50 years.

Way back then, while relational databases did continue to remain a major category for enterprises, there came a time when these organizations also started investing in more specialized databases like document databases, graph databases, columnar databases, as well as databases for mobile, search and analytics, etc. The era of a single category of general purpose databases gave way to a time of specialization, with databases being selected based on need of a workload.

However, overtime and with today’s growing massive data consumption, it is interesting to see developers and enterprises alike are going back to the more general purpose models, that are more converged in nature and help perform operations like analytics, etc., in a more effortless manner on a given dataset without having to migrate it or switch between different datastores. The agility with which enterprises can then perform these tasks is pushing the segment to aggressively go towards an application data platform approach.

Convergence is forcing us to rethink the systems we use to manage data across the enterprise and to think beyond the database, and architect an actual “application driven platform” that can process, store, secure, and analyze data in real-time, across all the relevant data sets.

Scaling With Data: The Success Mantra

The success of an organization cannot be decoupled from the software and the application they build. High-growth companies are really concerned about building applications faster and quicker. As a startup, you're probably interested in spending more time on shipping features than managing your database. You don’t want to be stuck with a legacy platform at the back end. With a legacy platform, even a simple update can take up to six months. And this is where MongoDB comes in, to provide a platform that can support rapid innovation, but with enterprise-grade security and world-class operational features built natively into its global cloud database service, MongoDB Atlas. For example, during the initial stages of the lockdown in India, Ludo King was seeing an exponential increase in downloads with tens of millions of players chalking up a quarter of a billion minutes of playing time a day. Yet all this was managed by a tiny team of developers who'd built their platform on MongoDB Atlas.

Today MongoDB's preferred database platform is used by a number of high-growth companies in India including the likes of Ludo King, Halaplay, Zomato, and Cure fit.

The road ahead for organizations trying to fully harness the power of data will certainly have challenges, but there’s also a tremendous amount of hope. Data is growing, people value it, and enterprises value it even more. It’s not by chance that data has been labeled the “new gold” and therefore the only question now is how to find and manage it.