Market Trends Shaping the Database Technology Space

Mark Perlstein, President and CEO, Datavail
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Mark Perlstein, President and CEO, Datavail

Market Trends Shaping the Database Technology Space:

I think that the explosion of Database as a Service (DBaaS) by organizations is clearly something that is hitting us, as well as SaaS applications. Customers procuring and consuming databases via a different infrastructure and provisioning is on us, and the nuances of managing these things combined with the lack of tolerance for anything being down or unavailable is affecting the database space dramatically.

As a business, we have been, and continue to make sure that we understand how to migrate clients into those various new frameworks and help them manage the systems and applications that run in those various frameworks. The sheer, utter explosion of databases, the different ways that data is stored in relational and NoSQL databases, and the different places that those databases are housed, are all impacting what we are doing to meet the demand of what is happening in the marketplace today.

Across all of this, pressures are being put on staff. Typically small staffs exist at our client firms and they are being consumed by tasks that are critical, but actually of lower value. So we are also creating a set of offerings and capabilities for our customers that not only exist at the highest level of the value stack but also take the operational, less valuable, yet still critical work, off of their hands. This allows the people at the more senior level to be able to focus on senior level work and not get bogged down in operational level work.

Business Challenges Faced By Database Services Organizations:

The user groups at the companies that we serve are demanding a vastly broader set of applications that solve very specific things. Each of those applications must be supported by a database, in whatever form that database exists, whether it's remotely managed, automated, delivered as a service, or on premises. At a big picture level there is an enormous proliferation of apps and hence an enormous proliferation of databases.

  ​We work to make sure that our clients are doing the work that their organization wants them to be doing and that work which is lower level but voluminous in nature gets handled at a cost and quality level that is tolerable by the client   

The ability for those organizations to maintain and keep all of those databases up and running in such a way that it is organized and well thought out with good, solid interface points between the businesses that require those applications and the IT organizations that are required to deliver and maintain those applications, is becoming extremely difficult. What we do is create a very consumable, variably adjustable level of consumption that is flexible with their growth in applications, hence their growth in databases, and by extension growth in the different kinds of databases that exist and proliferate. We can be there for our customers and fit into whatever their requirements are. In particular, like I suggested in the last answer, we work to make sure that our clients are doing the work that their organization wants them to be doing and that the work that is lower level but voluminous in nature gets handled at a cost and quality level that is tolerable by the client as they are going through this massive proliferation of apps and data.

Rapid Demand for On-site Technology:

I think that the idea that we need people "onsite" is going to become increasingly old-school and less required. Really what we need to do is move intellectual capability and capacity around to wherever it exists in the world and collaborate effectively, not worry about where people live or show up to work every day. We are going to increasingly get to a world where "onsite" talent is less and less required. Talent itself will be ever more required but where that talent resides will be less important than the fact that the actual talent exists. So, I think that we will be moving faster and faster to a world that is less reliant on "onsite" talent and more so on remote talent that can be accessed from anywhere.

Advantages of Using NoSQL Databases for Enterprises:

There is no question that the use and proliferation of NoSQL databases is going to continue and there is also no doubt in my mind that it is going to increase across midsize to enterprise customers. The likelihood of the NoSQL databases replacing the relational databases at large, I think, is a bit of an aggressive position to take. I believe that they will both grow and co-exist.

The experiences of enterprises with NoSQL databases will probably see a more operational type of use for NoSQL but the applications that sit on top of the relational databases and all the linkages and the things that are going on top of the relational databases is not going to end any time soon. So it would be my position that we will see the proliferation of NoSQL databases continue, but I do not think that it will eliminate in any way the reliance on relational databases. I think that both will coexist in a hybrid model in enterprise of all sizes.

Data Availability:

The reality is that nothing works until the data is available. So even if technically the application is up but the database is not up, or the store of the data is not up, then the application is down. The market’s tolerance of the unavailability of data has gone down, and down, and down. With that intolerance becoming more acute, the pressure has gone up on all of us that are involved in making sure data is available. I think the era of data is here and here to stay and keeping that data ever available, present, clean and fast is becoming as important as any element in the IT stack.

I would say it is because of the requirement of the availability of data that the era of data is upon us now forever. I would further say that I don’t believe that many organizations have fully organized themselves around that very reality. So we see things organized today between infrastructure and applications and the actual organizational placement of data management is often split, or bifurcated, into various components of applications and infrastructure. For the purpose of data availability it would be best to create the data management stack and aggregate the things that have been distributed into those other two organizations. Hence, aggregate them together into an operation that sits between infrastructure and applications and that is actually the organization that has the responsibility for managing all things data.

Disruptions and Transformations within Field Services:

In the field service space typically a ticket is generated, most often a break/fix item, and a technologist or capable person is dispatched to wherever that issue is, fixes it and leaves. It's usually related to something physical otherwise you don't need a field technician. If it's something technology or virtual related then the idea of a field technician isn't really appropriate. So to me just the words field technician have to do with the physical maintenance and fixing of devices or equipment that sit in physical locations.

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