The growing use of analytics to support business operations and the increasing complexity of data flows in all companies is prompting firms to adopt data management systems, says data management software firm Commvault Middle East, South Africa and Turkey systems engineering director Johan Scheepers.
There is an increasing need to ensure that any data are rapidly available for use in the appropriate business process, which requires data management systems that can support advanced-use cases.
The growth in data volumes has continued to outstrip the costs associated with managing the volumes, despite constant improvement in hardware performance and capacity that reduce such costs.
“Underutilisation of older data means that storing it is wholly a cost without benefit. Companies can derive value from their historical information by augmenting their analytics platforms and systems with older data to improve analytical accuracy with larger datasets.”
Additionally, the ability of the data management platforms to move data between various types of storage and business processes – through the use of the correct open standards and protocols – makes them effective in all cloud environments. Most cloud service providers in South Africa use Commvault software for data management, highlights Scheepers.
Companies using cloud systems, whether in-house or public, can deploy high-technology business intelligence systems to improve operations, management and the protection of data, as well as strategic planning and insights, as the data management software supports these complex dataflows.
The visibility of the data, its creators and legal owners, as well as the processes and the people authorised to access specific data, provided by large-scale data management systems, enables effective data management policies to be applied, based on the business’s policies and regulatory obligations.
This allows for the open movement of the data between in-house and off-premise cloud systems, including mobile work solutions and systems, as the data can be protected, usually through encryption.
“Commvault does consult with companies to help them convert their information management practices into digital policies suited to their information technology environment with the correct access, risk, backup, storage and deletion policies applied to each type of data or document.”
This enables companies to effectively manage data leak risks and threats. The visibility also bolsters cybersecurity, as access patterns and permissions, as well as the devices used to access the data, can be used to identify attacks.
The detailed information of the data means that vulnerable data or data that transits compromised systems can be locked or flagged to prevent data loss and thwart the attack.
Meanwhile, data classification, which underpins effective data management systems, is a focus area for CIOs in South Africa. Data classification is particularly relevant for organisations battling to curb excessive data growth. Classifying the data according to business value and regulatory requirement is a good starting point, says Scheepers.
CIOs are also reviewing the number and types of data management systems and programs that support business processes in their environments, with a view to rationalising them to fewer systems so that they can exercise more effective control over them.
“We predict that many enterprises will implement large data management projects and upgrades this year that can no longer be delayed, as the new systems are becoming increasingly important for effective business operations,” concludes Scheepers.