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Access to business data is hugely valuable

Access to business data is hugely valuable

March 14, 2014 0 Comments

Collecting and using data from various sources could help companies' apps excel.

Collecting and using data from various sources could help companies' apps excel.

It's easy for a company to overestimate its ability to tap into its own information. After all, leaders may assume that content within the company's own servers is naturally available and useful. This is not necessarily true: Today's organizations work with a huge variety of information repositories, some in the cloud and others on-premise, and the vast mixture of data types involved could represent yet another layer of silos. If businesses are going to unite all of this content and use it to improve decision-making, it is clear that specialized application development will be necessary. This move could add value to everyday business operations.

The true importance of data The difference between a data-driven enterprise and one run on intuition will surely become clear over the next few years. Some companies have found ways to make choices indicated by their data analytics and reporting, whereas others are still counting on the instincts of a few highly paid leaders. The firms in the former camp can act decisively on the patterns they have actually experienced, succeeding in fields where traditional wisdom predicts failure but reports indicate expansion is possible. The use of data can also improve teamwork and unity, as in optimal setups, all users are working from the same pool of resources.

Ensuring connectivity That last point demonstrates one of the most important considerations when working with data. Namely, users must have access to one, unified pool of content, no matter which department they serve in. Their dashboards must all be informed by the same sources, ensuring that the reports drive the company forward instead of pulling it in many different directions. This also helps keep the predictions and insights as accurate as possible, by ensuring these results take all factors into account, even those that at first seemed to be unrelated. Information access can be integrated into the software employees use every day.

Developing the right apps To get data access into enterprise Web applications, developers need to work with a robust platform that will help them achieve connectivity. If these professionals have to implement an individual API for each information source, which may change over time, they could end up with a protracted development cycle or a reduced feature set. Instead, they can seek out Platform-as-a-Service deployments that offer dedicated data integration features. These options collect information from a wide variety of sources, including big data sets and cloud storage. Working with this type of interface can give firms the data connectivity they need to improve their operations.

Michelle Tackabery

An experienced content and social media marketing professional, Michelle writes frequently about the practical applications of information technology.

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