The opportunities and challenges presented by big data are examined in a new survey of 298 data managers and professionals who are part of the Independent Oracle Users Group. The survey was underwritten by Oracle Corporation and conducted by Unisphere Research, a division of Information Today, Inc.
As more data becomes available from sources both internal and external sources, organizations are seeking to better extract meaningful insight from this information to increase innovation, retain customers, and increase operational efficiency. In tandem with this trend, organizations are also being challenged by their end users, who want greater capability and integration to mine and analyze the burgeoning new sources of information.
While definitions of “big data” vary, it is generally seen as increased volume, variety, velocity, and value. In particular, this survey looked at two of the key differentiators of big data versus traditional data stores — volume and variety.
According to this new survey,more than one out of 10 data managers now have in excess of a petabyte of data within their organizations, and a majority of respondents report their levels of unstructured data are growing. Fewer than one out of five respondents feel their IT infrastructure will be ready to handle this incoming surge of data. Protecting data overall is important, but unstructured data gets low priority at this time.
While many organizations are still struggling to understand the business value of big data, more than 50% consider it to be extremely or very important to their business. Respondents see the greatest opportunities from big data in competing more effectively (40%) and growing business revenue streams (32%). Most big data initiatives currently come out of the IT department, but the first business applications are being seen in marketing and sales—an area typically already comfortable with data analytics.
Hadoop — often seen as the cornerstone of many big data efforts — has yet to catch on within most Oracle environments. This suggests that many organizations are just starting to address big data storage requirements. Adoption of Hadoop, in fact, is expected to double over the coming year.
The report titled “Big Data, Big Challenges, Big Opportunities: 2012 IOUG Big Data Strategies Survey” will be available at the IOUG website to IOUG members.