Maidenhead, UK, 03 April 2013 – Small companies must not be deterred from utilising the latest big data technology by the popular misconception it is exclusively for large enterprises with large budgets. That is the view of Yves de Montcheuil, vice president of marketing at Talend and a leading expert on data management and data integration.
Recent findings from the Aberdeen Group support this view. In its research brief, Big Data for Small Budgets, the analyst finds that “the ‘Big’ aspect of big data is often in the eye of the beholder; for smaller companies, terabytes or even gigabytes of data can pose the same problems and opportunities that petabytes do for global enterprises.”
The report identifies challenges organisations face in managing their data today. Talend agrees that rapid data growth, which Aberdeen Group’s research has shown to be increasing by 40% year-over-year, puts a huge strain on existing IT infrastructures and budgets.
At the same time, organisations have to manage a range of different data sources from structured transactional data to unstructured sources like social media, web traffic and customer sentiment. In meeting the need to collect data rapidly from these disparate sources and deliver it quickly to business, users are faced with a range of technology options – all expensive to implement.
“This explains why at one time most SMEs would have considered big data solutions out of their reach in terms of the financial investment and resources required,” says de Montcheuil. “Yet small companies certainly see a need for the kinds of benefits that big data traditionally provides, with the Aberdeen Group research finding they have a similarly urgent demand for data as their larger peers. In the research, 40% of small companies needed actionable intelligence within one hour of a business event while 29% needed it at near real-time speeds. The insight that they gain from rapidly processing large volumes of data using the latest big data technologies has the potential to provide them with this intelligence. So they face a key question – how can they access this intelligence without costs getting out of control?”
Finding a Solution
Flexibility and agility are critical for all businesses in tackling their big data challenges but particularly for SMEs with their limited resources. In line with this, the Aberdeen Group research identifies that the ability to move data easily from one source to another is key. The analyst found that 74% of Leaders in big data had ETL (extract, transform, load) technology to move their data. At the same time, the need to collect, manage and analyse both structured and unstructured data has led to the emergence and growing utilisation of NoSQL (not only SQL) databases.
“Versatile solutions, like the Hadoop framework, can make big data processing easier for SMEs to achieve. As an open source solution, Hadoop does not constrain users to expensive proprietary systems but lets them use commodity hardware and provide an infinitely scalable amount of processing, at a very attractive cost,” says de Montcheuil.
“As a result, Hadoop can be a facilitator for SMEs to achieve success with big data,” he adds. “When augmented with big data integration and quality solutions from vendors like ourselves, it is lowering the technical barrier to big data solutions and enabling even the smallest enterprise to tackle their big data issues.”
“Today, we are seeing different use cases in which open source technologies are helping democratise big data and open it up to SMEs. One example could be making the use of online recommendations to influence a customer’s propensity to buy more accessible to smaller businesses as a marketing channel.”
“For years, large organisations such as Amazon or eBay have used recommendation engines to perform such tasks as matching and recommending products, people and advertisements to users,” continues de Montcheuil. “Now, thanks to open source technology, making the required massive data management more accessible, smaller organisations can benefit from the processing power of technologies pioneered by these giants, without the need for extensive investment or in-house expertise.”
For more information about Talend’s solutions for big data please visit www.talend.com/resource/big-data-solutions.html