Game-Changing Technologies Fueling The Data-Driven Enterprise In 2024

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Data fabric is paving the way to greater visibility in enterprise data, as it “expands data access across disparate systems and creates a single, secure, and complete view of data,” said Adam Glaser, SVP for Appian. “For example, data fabric allows business users to explore enterprise data and build custom reports and dashboards to make report creation possible for business users without previous development knowledge. They don’t need a data expert or developer to build a report.” Plus, data fabric supports both analytical and transactional data. With its centralized architecture, data fabric also assures greater data security and compliance.

Glaser added, “IT gains a centralized picture showing who can view, update, and delete specific datasets.”

In addition, data fabric “enables enterprises to better ingest, curate, prepare, and deliver data all in one platform,” said Ahsan Farooqi, VP and data analytics leader for Orion Innovation. “It is a core technology for data and platform modernization and enables data democratization across the organization. More importantly, with the benefits of higher-quality data from data fabric technology, enterprises can unlock the benefits of GenAI.”

Potential issues: Data fabric opens up access to data across silos, but “is not a complete answer to empowering businesses to make better data-driven decisions,” said Glaser. “Data fabric becomes more insightful and actionable when it is combined with other technologies such as process mining, machine learning, enterprise AI, and generative AI.”

Of course, data silos pose roadblocks, in and of themselves, to data fabric initiatives. “Most organizations have multiple hyperscalers, which makes this task challenging,” Farooqi pointed out. In addition, “Data fabric technology can be limited in scope and effectiveness for companies still using legacy mainframe technology.”

To fully realize the potential of data fabric, “organizations must be willing to put in the time to understand what their end goal is with this technology, how it fits within their existing architecture, and the teams using it,” said Glaser. “Ignoring or rushing through this initial phase can cause more disruption than it’s worth, and ultimately, you can lose your return on the investment. Not all data fabric solutions are created equal.”

Business benefits: Data fabric is built for managing the thorniest data problems faced by businesses. “It seamlessly integrates various data tasks, including analytics, decision making, and prescriptive and predictive analytics,” said Farooqi. “It has the ability to store data in a lakehouse, which can host multiple formats for data. It’s also scalable. Data fabric technology creates a seamless pipeline for data ingestion, which allows the technology to scale as data increases.”

In addition, data fabric “aims to reduce costs, risks, and delays; improve compliance; and drive better business outcomes, without the need for costly and time-consuming data collection efforts,” said Glaser.

“Organizations can save significant time and money with these capabilities and can be confident that only the right users can view certain secure data.”


Cloud computing—on the scene for almost 2 decades now—continues to provide data enterprises with almost unlimited resources and capacity for new generations of applications and capabilities. “Cloud computing has enabled huge advances in how data is managed and shared across organizations,” said Vamshi Ramarapu, VP of engineering at Actian. “Cloud-based storage and collaboration tools enable companies to securely store, access, and share vast amounts of data globally, fostering collaboration and innovation on a scale never seen before. This shift toward cloud computing and serverless architectures is redefining how data is managed and delivered.”

One pivotal area seeing change this year is the rise of cloud portability.

“There are clear risks from being dependent on any one cloud provider, including recovery time from disruptions and compliance,” said Jason Forget, president at Cockroach Labs. Compliance standards such as the Digital Operational Resilience Act (DORA) have “catalyzed a broader movement toward cloud agnosticism, where companies seek solutions that offer inherent portability and flexibility. In an era marked by heightened regulatory scrutiny and evolving industry standards, the ability to seamlessly transition databases and applications across different cloud platforms has become paramount.”

Potential issues: One of the biggest roadblocks to the cloud is the skills gap. “Keeping pace with the constant influx of new products and technological advancements demands a workforce that remains at the forefront of industry knowledge and adaptability,” said Ramarapu. “Companies need to upskill employees through training programs, workshops, certifications, and partnerships.”

When it comes to resiliency, “Implementing and maintaining a multi-cloud environment can be expensive and complex, especially with the applications and tools available today,” said Forget. “While public cloud providers offer their own suite of proprietary databases, solutions, and services, the lack of interoperability can hinder seamless migration between platforms.” This is also complicated by “significant expenses associated with managing multiple cloud services, navigating data transfer fees between clouds, and ensuring compatibility across various platforms.”

Cloud adoption also raises a number of management challenges. This includes “a keen awareness of governance, compliance, and cost management considerations,” said Ramarapu. “Understanding regulatory requirements and industry standards is crucial, as is optimizing costs in a landscape where subscription-based and pay-as-you-go models dominate, necessitating careful selection of cloud providers. Successful proliferation of cloud computing and hybrid deployments hinges on strategic planning, ongoing education, and collaborative partnerships.”

Business benefits: Cloud computing “offers unparalleled flexibility and reliability, backed by uptime guarantees and inherent scalability,” said Ramarapu. “This allows businesses to adjust resources as needed, ensuring optimal performance and cost-efficiency. The diverse range of storage options available in the cloud empowers organizations to tailor solutions to their specific needs.”

For hybrid environments in which some data remains on-premises, “hybrid environments seamlessly integrate on-premises and cloud deployments.”

Cloud portability also means “being able to shift from one cloud to another quickly, without friction,” Forget added. “The ability to move applications or workloads between different cloud providers swiftly not only enhances flexibility but also mitigates risks associated with downtime or service disruptions.”

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