As the volume and variety of data continues its exponential growth year after year, mastering that data—capturing, analyzing and utilizing it effectively to make informed decisions is becoming fundamental to business survival. To succeed and thrive in this environment requires businesses and organizations to embrace a culture of continuous learning, rapid adoption of insights and the seamless integration of modern technologies.

However, this is where businesses encounter their most formidable challenge—the ability to adopt new forms of data and derive meaningful insights from it. To overcome this hurdle, organizations must ensure they possess a scalable, secure and, above all, agile data platform capable of accommodating diverse data sources and tools that drive innovation, deliver critical insights, address business challenges and foster growth and innovation.

Why You Need an Agile Data Platform

The traditional approach to data management typically involves using a mix of disparate database and data management tools, knowledge models and rule engines. This fragmented approach can be rigid and inflexible, requiring extensive modifications to applications and systems to accommodate new requirements. In today’s rapidly evolving world, such an approach lacks the agility necessary for businesses to leverage new tools and seize emerging opportunities swiftly and effectively. Waiting weeks or months to implement and leverage the business advantage of a new tool could lead to missed opportunities and loss of competitive advantage.

This is precisely why a data platform approach becomes a linchpin for business survival and prosperity. Businesses need a cohesive and comprehensive technology solution, seamlessly integrated with the entire organization.

The ideal data platform should be capable of ingesting data in all its forms—structured, semi-structured or unstructured. It should accommodate diverse data models, from traditional SQL to RDF, from Geospatial to Temporal, while enriching data with metadata and applying ontologies and taxonomies; in essence applying human intelligence at a machine scale. Ultimately, it should deliver data downstream, tailored to the specific needs of the business, all the while ensuring enterprise-grade security and governance.

Transitioning to a data platform approach may require businesses to venture beyond conventional technologies and architectures. However, this pivotal step is instrumental in ensuring their resilience and competitive edge in an ever-evolving business landscape.

Proven Results

Visionary organizations have already realized the benefits of data agility. For example, a leading aerospace company used an agile data platform to transition to a model-based systems engineering (MBSE) methodology. The result? The company improved efficiency, streamlined processes, connected disparate data sources and provided better data analysis. Furthermore, a non-profit life insurance company transitioned from legacy mainframes to a modern and agile data infrastructure to make data from across its systems more accessible to the business and easier for its users to search. By combining current and historical policy data with other unstructured data from across the enterprise, the organization enabled its users to more easily find all member policy information for servicing, reporting and compliance.

Let Data Guide Your Success

By embracing an agile data platform, businesses can chart a course toward a future defined by growth, innovation and continued prosperity. A data platform that can adapt to diverse data forms, support varied data models and enrich data with metadata is essential for driving valuable insights, solving business challenges and fostering a culture of innovation. Businesses must recognize that in the digital age, data is the lifeblood of success, and the ability to harness its potential will determine their resilience and relevance in an increasingly competitive global marketplace.

As organizations look to explore new markets and technologies, an agile data platform becomes the key enabler of their ambitions. A singular, integrated data platform frees businesses from the constraints of patchwork solutions and empowers them to respond quickly to market changes, consumer demands and emerging opportunities. By adopting a data platform approach, businesses can unlock the true potential of their data, fueling their growth and steering their course toward a prosperous and sustainable future. This journey will require a mindset shift, but the rewards are vast—the ability to turn data into actionable insights, create value for customers and forge a resilient path to success in a world where change, and the need to manage big data, is the only constant.

About the Author

Philip Miller is a Customer Success Manager for Progress and was named a Top Influencer in Onalytica’s Who’s Who in Data Management. Outside of work, he’s a father to two daughters, a fan of dogs and an avid learner, trying to learn something new every day. 

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