You might want to switch cloud data warehouse providers. Or are you looking for your first cloud service? This smart little guide will walk you through the different on-premise and cloud-based options for a data warehouse. It will also advise what questions to ask and what red flags to watch out for and avoid.
Why (and when) is a data warehouse necessary?
Let’s start by defining what a data warehouse is. A data warehouse is a system for handling data that combines data from different sources into a single, centralized repository to help with data analysis, business intelligence, and making smart decisions.
But data warehouses can’t give these valuable insights without structured data. So, before they can store it, the raw data they get must be filtered and given shape and structure through an ETL process. If your company’s information is stored in different source systems and shared across your organization, ask yourself:
⦁ Do you find that data and reports don’t match up?
⦁ Are you having trouble sharing information?
⦁ Does your company not have a single truth-telling source?
If you said “Yes” to all three questions, a data warehouse is probably what your business needs. Because it brings together data from many different sources, a data warehouse lets you use all of your details to create better business decisions.
And since a data storage standardizes and shops all of your organization’s data in the same format, the famous single source of truth your qualified end-users benefit from better data quality and consistency. Data centralization also makes it easier to get to data at the right time, which helps deal with time-sensitive issues and turn details into insights faster.
Data warehouses don’t all work the same way, of course. Aside from important features like data storage, the right data warehouse will depend on what you want to do with your data, how much money you have, and how big your business is.
Let’s look into the options a bit more.
On-premise and cloud data warehouse models
When looking for a data warehouse, the first thing to decide is whether you want one on-premise or in the cloud. Each has its nice points and bad points.
On-premise data warehouse:
This traditional data warehouse runs on hardware the company owns and keeps on-site. Because there is a lot of data to collect and organize, it usually takes a lot of money and skilled workers. IT might like this solution better because it gives them full control over the whole repository.
Depending on their old appliances, hardware, and software, they may need outside appliances and controlled services to keep matters running. But since the cloud came along, this choice isn’t as popular as it used to be. Gartner says that by 2023, 75% of all company databases will run on platforms in the cloud.
Cloud data warehouses:
Since cloud-based data warehouses are more flexible and less expensive, they have become the better choice. In the cloud, data can be gathered, stored, queried, and analyzed without upfront paying for hardware or infrastructure.
But not every data warehouse in the cloud works the same way:
⦁ Bring Your License (BYOL) gives companies more freedom to use their licenses. BYOL makes moving to a cloud service cheaper and less risky by letting people use their own devices. Since licenses and hardware devices aren’t tied to each other in a one-to-one way, many more dedicated resources are available, which assists businesses in meeting compliance requirements.
⦁ Data warehouse as a service is a subcontracting model in which a provider sets up and handles the hardware and software resources a data warehouse needs. The customer gives the managed service the data and pays for it. DWaaS is a good choice for organizations with small or limited IT departments because the customer doesn’t have trouble staffing the data warehouse.
⦁ Hybrid data warehouses use the power of both cloud storage and data platforms that are installed on-site. With a hybrid platform, businesses can keep up with the latest technologies and make their systems more efficient without giving up their current investments. Hybrid models can be shared or used only by one person.
Considerations before purchasing a data warehouse
Now that you’ve decided you need a data warehouse, here are some things you should consider before determining which is finest for your business.
You need to know if you will be storing unstructured and structured data in your new data warehouse. First, you should do well with a relational database, where information is stored in tables that depend on each other. For the latter, you probably need a non-relational database, where information is stored in a “laundry list” order.
How rapidly would you need your data? The price goes up as the performance goes up. That doesn’t mean you should put up with bad performance, but you should think carefully about the pace of the process, the size of the data you want to process, etc., so you can select a choice that fits your requirements.
When choosing your data warehouse, this is one of the most important things to consider. Whether you pick on-premise or in the cloud, the price will change. Vendor pricing tables are a fine place to begin but ask for a quote with your exact configuration. Some vendors offer a compensation model, whereas others offer flat rate pricing, in which you can pay per TB or hour of usage.
When looking at how to implement a data warehouse, there are a few things to think about. Cost is important, but your goals may make time more important. If one data storage costs a little less than another but requires five months to set up, that’s five months when you’re less competitive because you don’t have business insights.