Data Warehouses Are Not New
Many companies and business professionals are already familiar with the concept of a data warehouse or data lake. The “data mart” technology, as it was originally called, dates all the way back to the 1980s when it was first designed to address the problems of handling enterprise-scale data. But over the years, data technologies have been advancing rapidly, so much so that Qrvey’s data engine / warehouse products look nothing like their older siblings. In fact, the only thing they share, is data.
When data warehouses were first implemented and sold to the enterprise, they were mainly trying to reduce costs by reducing redundancy. Just about every dataset at your company likely included data that was also stored in another system, the theory went, so by taking the time to gather, clean and integrate data from various legacy systems, it was possible to build a single, efficient repository that eliminated duplicate columns and data, thereby significantly reducing storage costs.
Data Still Isn’t Free
Everything comes at a cost however, and with data warehouses, that cost came in the form of rigidity and inflexibility. Whether your warehouse was built on a dimensional or normalized architecture, it had to meet a rigid set of rules before it could be added to the warehouse. That requirement meant that your warehouse could only include structured data, data that required a lot of planning and cleansing along with multiple transformations, joins and other data voodoo to tie it all together.
In the beginning, data warehouses were simply meant for the offline storage of historical data. Over time, warehouses evolved into on-time and eventually real time systems that could also be queried, but they were never designed for today’s modern Internet-connected world. Today, the volume and velocity of data needing to be ingested has exploded, the types of data have expanded to include unstructured and semi-structured data, and all of this data must service customers, suppliers and employees with different needs located around the globe.
The data technology that is at the heart of the Qrvey platform and Data Router, our data ingest and transformation engine. Elasticsearch began in the mid-2000’s as a data solution for the modern world. It’s a distributed, multi-tenant data system that was built for the cloud and has HTTP services built right in. As its name implies, Elasticsearch is flexible and scalable and doesn’t require rigid rules to ingest your data. That’s because over the past four decades, storage has become orders of magnitude more affordable and computing power can now instantly ramp up or down to meet demand in near real time. Elasticsearch can easily handle not only structured data, but also semi-structured and even unstructured data like documents, files, audio and video files, all at the same time.
Elasticsearch Performance Speaks for Itself
The performance gains of Elasticsearch versus the data technologies from even just a few years ago are frankly, stunning. Hundreds of millions of rows or documents can be queried in just seconds, and datasets will billions of rows are no longer out of reach, paving the way for a whole new class of powerful enterprise-ready applications.
That’s why when Qrvey talks about a Data Powerhouse, we’re talking about a lot more than just Elasticsearch. In our mind, Elasticsearch alone would just give your company a better warehouse with limited benefits. What makes a true Powerhouse is the powerful layer of next-generation applications that sit atop your warehouse, extending its capabilities to your entire enterprise. Qrvey’s Powerhouse technologies include analytics, automation and a drag-and-drop form and application builder, all of which enable self-service capabilities like never before.
Analytics is at the core of Qrvey application layer, using all of the power of Elasticsearch to provide incredible visualizations that come complete with all of the features you’d expect, including filtering, sorting, bucketing, calculated columns and more. You can create beautiful charts, reports, dashboards and even metrics that can all be updated along with your data in real time.
Automation Is A Game Changer
Automation is the second leg of the Qrvey platform, because analytics alone is only part of the story. Building and distributing reports is yesterday’s business intelligence. Today’s world requires that companies take action and that’s exactly what automation provides. As metrics and thresholds are met or exceeded, alerts and notifications can be sent, data can be logged or updated or follow-up actions can be taken, all without manual intervention.
Finally, Qrvey includes an easy-to-use form and application builder that can be quickly mastered by even non-technical users to collect new data, distribute information and analytics or automate routine tasks. This allows all of Qrvey’s data, analytic and automation capabilities to become truly self-service for anyone in your organization, from the IT and analyst community to individual project managers, teams and departments.
These are just a few of the reasons why a Data Powerhouse is so much more than the data warehouse of old. We’d love the opportunity to show you what a Data Powerhouse can do for your enterprise. Contact us for a demo to learn more.