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It’s Time to Embrace the Data Cloud: Here’s Why





If you haven’t watched Matillion’s recent webinar, State of the Data Cloud, it’s a must-see event. In it, an all-star panel, featuring:


  • Matthew Scullion, CEO, Matillion
  • Kent Graziano, Chief Technical Evangelist and Senior Advisor, Snowflake
  • Todd Beauchene, Senior Product Manager, ThoughtSpot
  • Mona Chadha, Director of Category Management, AWS Marketplace
  • Brian Bickell, Data Practice Director, InterWorks


talk about the current state and the future of data in the cloud. The amount of insight and expertise about the cloud, data, analytics, and where it’s all going is truly impressive. 


Each member of the panel has their own insights and opinions about where data and analytics are headed. But one thing they all agree on: It’s time to embrace the data cloud. It’s simply the way we are going to do business in the future. Why is now the time to move your data and analytics to the data cloud? There are several reasons why the time is right.


Data, and data silos, are growing


According to our 2019 IDG Marketpulse Survey, respondents reported that they were pulling data from an average of 400 data sources, and 20 percent of them were relying on data from 1000 or more sources. That’s a lot of silos. Companies also go through mergers and acquisitions that only add to the number of silos and multiple versions of applications. 


When you consider that you have to sift through those silos to identify at least a dozen attributes (or more) to feed a data model, that adds up to a lot of work if your data isn’t centralized. A data cloud provides that central, single source of the truth. When organizations don’t have time to waste sifting through silos or questioning the source and fidelity of their data, as well as security risks surrounding that data, shared data in the data cloud is a major productivity booster and a competitive edge.


“What the data cloud does is it provides a real holistic solution, where data can reside in really one location within a platform that can, like I said, aggregate that data. And then in addition, the concerns around security and data governance go away as you create a data cloud.”

– Mona Chadha, AWS


The speed of business requires digitization


In 2020, the pandemic was a global event that caused every single business to question its agility. According to IDC, that resulted in 68 percent of enterprises they surveyed accelerating their move to the data cloud (1). Digitization is no longer just nice to have for businesses wanting to thrive: It’s a must.  From the dismantling of data silos to the speed at which we need to crunch data, to the number of distributed workers who need access to data and applications, the data cloud is the only ecosystem that allows modern businesses to keep up with demand for useful data and a rapid pace. 


“I remember…constantly having this conversation with some fairly big companies saying, ‘We will never go to the cloud.’ And every one of those ones that I had that conversation with, a year and a half later, were talking to Snowflake and starting to move their data to the cloud, because they realized they could not keep up with their competition if they didn’t.”

– Kent Graziano, Snowflake


Data isn’t just for IT anymore


There have always been plenty of people who need access to data: knowledge workers, data analysts, data scientists, and pretty much any business user who makes decisions. But getting that data meant going through IT to unlock it. That made it more difficult and more time consuming to get the useful data people needed to do their jobs. But it was a given that you’d need to go through IT to get centralized, transformed data. 


Today, users demand more. Business users, especially those who have grown up with data at their fingertips, want fast access to it to validate ideas and make better decisions. And many enterprises, like Amazon, put emphasis on all decisions being data-driven first. That requires seamless access to data, without needing to rely on a technical team. IT still needs to ensure proper governance and security for that data, but it needs to be accessible to those who need it. The data cloud makes it easy to have both governance and access. 


“Whether it’s COVID or some other thing happening in the business, I want to know about it now. And with this whole stack, you can get answers incredibly fast. And you don’t have to have that technical knowledge. And really, that’s the game changer, is that what’s driving it is the demand for business decision makers to have access to the data they need.”

– Todd Beauchene, ThoughtSpot


Enterprises want simple access to third-party data


Most businesses want to augment their data with third-party data: For example, retailers needing demographic data to help them identify hot markets for new stores and advertising. But (and you’re seeing a pattern here) access to that third-party data was often a pain, requiring you to find the data source, go through IT, manually extract, load, and transform the data, layer upon layer of work. 


The data cloud helps eliminate the barriers to access for third-party data. Now, getting third-party data is as easy as heading to a cloud data marketplace, like AWS Data Exchange, where finding data sets is as easy as subscribing to products and services. Cloud providers are meeting the demand for third-party data, and the data cloud is where it all happens. 


“In my career in data warehousing, we wanted to augment our organization’s analytics with external third-party data. And it was a pain in the neck, the amount of effort needed to get that data. The data cloud eliminates all of that. We can basically build a curated data mart and just share it with another organization and have them join to it with a tool like ThoughtSpot. Putting (that data) in one place makes it easier to get value from data and deliver on the promise.” 

 – Kent Graziano, Snowflake


Don’t miss State of the Data Cloud


These thoughts from our panel are just one small taste of the wealth of insight our panelists shared in State of the Data Cloud. Hearing these five data leaders in conversation is an exceptional experience. Don’t miss the replay of State of the Data Cloud:


Monday, May 27

10am EST


Register for the replay


Registering for the replay also gets you on-demand access after the event. Catch it if you can!


Other sources:


(1) “US-Cloud Database Migration and Architecture Survey,” IDC, 2021, N=406.

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