Every single day, an absurdly large 2,000,000,000,000,000,000 bytes of data are created by businesses. Roughly speaking, this translates to around $77 billion, demonstrating the incredible capital that’s currently being poured into data management. One of the most fundamental systems for data management that companies turn to is a data warehouse, providing a location to store all of their data.
But, there is more than just one type of data warehouse available for businesses to choose from. In this article, we’ll be exploring what a data warehouse is, before moving through the benefits of different formats of warehouse.
Let’s get right into it.
What is a Data Warehouse?
A data warehouse is a centralized system where all the data from a company is stored. This is typically a large system that will integrate data sets from a range of different sources, providing one go-to location where any data farmed, collected, or processed by the business is located.
Typically, data warehouses come in two formats, on-site and cloud. An on-site data warehouse is constructed within your office or headquarters, holding all of your data on-premises to your business. Cloud, as you may guess, is data that’s stored on the cloud, with large-scale data warehouse businesses offering to house your data online.
What are the benefits of on-site Data Warehouses?
If starting from scratch, on-site data warehouses can be incredibly costly to create. From building or renting a location for them to filling them with the correct tech equipment, you’re likely to rack up a hefty bill for your company. That said, there are certain benefits that come along with on-site data warehouses.
Most commonly, the benefits are:
- Control over technology
- Network connection
- Visibility and Trust
Let’s break these down further.
Control over technology
A central benefit of turning to on-site storage is that you have complete control over the technology that you’re going to be using. From the amount of actual storage that you have to the security defenses that you’re going to employ, you make the decisions.
Especially if you have very particular data that you want to keep safe, having it all in one place under technology of your choice will ensure that you have a creator level of control. If you want to change anything, that’s also completely up to you, with the ownership that on-site storage suggests providing freedom for your business.
When turning to cloud data warehouses, everything has to be done over an internet connection. If you’re suffering from an internet outage in your area, or your business just can’t get online right now, then you’re not going to be able to access the data that you need.
With on-site data storage, you’ll be able to access your data directly, without needing to use the internet. With this, you can access your data much faster, providing a direct way of interacting with it from your headquarters. Especially if your business relies on a rapid use of data, then it may be more effective for you to keep it in local storage.
Alternatively, you could always opt for a hybrid approach, which many businesses do.
Visibility and Trust
One comfort of on-site data management is that you know exactly where your data is at all times. Both virtually and physically, you know where you would need to go if you need to connect to or draw upon your data. With complete trust, you’ll be able to configure your security structures to ensure that only people you know or want to access the data are able to do so.
This also comes for backups, with a more natural process of creating a backup and storing it somewhere safe, giving you the peace of mind you may be seeking.
What are the benefits of Cloud Data Warehouses?
Being online, cloud data warehouses provide a range of benefits that businesses can take advantage of. These are commonly broken down into four areas:
Let’s break these down further.
One of the most sought-after benefits of cloud data warehouses for business is the fact they are completely scalable to the needs of the company. If your business wants to expand, work with more customers, and thus collect more data, all you need to do is select a storage plan that has access to more space each month.
Instead of having to construct additional infrastructure and install it on your on-site premises, you simply have to click a few buttons on your cloud provider. Due to this, the scalability of your business is never capped by the amount of data that you can process, with easily scalable or reducible plans making sure that you know the exact amount of space that you need.
Especially when using a cloud warehouse service, you’re able to directly select how much space your business will need. When discussing which cloud warehouses to use, the conversation typically circles around a few main companies. If you’re looking for a cloud service, then check out a comparison of Snowflake vs Redshift to find out which of these companies is right for you. You’ll be able to see the various costs associated with scalability there.
When running local storage, there are several costs that are naturally incurred from having everything on-site. For example, you’ll have to actually physically pay for the servers themselves, getting them delivered and installed in your facility. Equally, you’ll have to rent out additional space to store these servers, making sure that you have enough physical room to house them.
From there, you need to start thinking about any other elements of the tech stack you want to include, like installing security measures. Finally, there are salary concerns, having to pay people to maintain your servers. While this could be a few times a year, with large data centers, this is a full-time position, leading to your business having to spend a great deal to keep your data on-site.
However, cloud data warehouses have none of these costs associated with them, everything being bundled into a much smaller monthly payment system. Depending on how much space you use, you’ll pay more each month for your warehouse storage. Without the need to rent space, buy additional tech stack software, and pay for the upkeep of the data locations, you’re able to easily find a pricing plan that works for you – saving your business money in the long run.
When it comes to ensuring the security of your data, you can’t get much better than a cloud data warehouse. Considering it’s the cloud warehouse’s job to ensure the safety of their data, no expense is spared on keeping company data safe. From hiring around-the-clock technicians to updating the servers with new variations of security software, every step that there is to be taken, will be.
Equally, if a new threat is developing online, data warehouses will be one step ahead, ensuring that their security defenses are ready to go. With this, you can rest assured that your data will always be safe when using a cloud data warehouse. Considering that 60% of small businesses go bankrupt after losing their customers’ faith after experiencing a data breach, keeping your data safe should be a priority for your business.
Another major benefit when it comes to cloud data storage is the fact that they run 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. Due to this, you’ll never have a problem with server outages or hours when you can’t find the data you need.
Especially as the world of work moves continuously further into the realm of remote working, it’s never been more important to have data available online. By having all of the data that your employees will need to do their jobs in one accessible location online, you’ll be able to boost productivity and save people time.
Across security, accessibility, cost, and scalability, it’s not difficult to see why more and more business owners are flocking to cloud data warehouses for their company’s main storage portal. While on-site storage does have some benefits, the increased cost and difficulty of managing this data places it firmly as a second-best choice.
While both of these services help to store data for a company, the access your employees get and the convenience levels of both vary incredibly.