Jon Bock

Sep 13, 2016

Last week we discussed a theme that we saw in the Cloud Analytics Symposiums that we had earlier this year – that the use of cloud for data analytics is actually changing the way people work, making not only greater collaboration between people and groups possible, but also enabling more experimentation and creativity in the work of data analysis.

As we kick off our fall Cloud Analytics City Tour today in New York, we wanted to discuss another lesson learned from these past symposiums and to provide a sneak peak of what to expect at our upcoming City Tour events.

This spring we heard thought leaders discuss ways in which organizations are looking to self-service analytics, streaming data, and multi-source data exploration to connect not only formerly siloed information within an organization, but also to include diverse external data that had previously been difficult to integrate and leverage. Beyond just bringing together data, these companies are hoping to create a business mindset where every decision possible becomes a data-driven decision.

However, the goal of using data-driven decision making across the organization has all too often been stymied by critical obstacles. Tamara Dull, a speaker in our spring Symposium named #13 on the Big Data 2015: Top 100 Influencers in Big Data list, pointed out that the lack of people resources and organizational assumptions about big data solutions are often what hinders the implementation of successful big data infrastructure and processes.

While self-service infrastructure can address part of this conundrum, there has been a painful shortage of qualified people who can implement, manage, and maintain the existing “big data” solutions as well as a shortage of skilled data scientists to support the decision-making analytics needed by decision-makers.

Analytics tools including Tableau and Looker help data analysts work with data more easily, but when plugged into a modern, agile data warehousing solution these services are super-charged – able to provide more insight with more data, faster, and at any scale required. Dean Abbott, Co-founder at SmarterHQ and a data scientist with over 21 years of experience, noted that Snowflake’s unique support for semi-structured data can make it possible for analysts to access and join a greater diversity of data faster than ever before, in minutes rather than hours.

And what’s more, with a data warehouse built for the cloud, the entrenched impression that an organization needs a new breed and more IT staff to handle care and feeding of the data platform also no longer holds true. In fact, it doesn’t take a huge IT organization to support big data. Snowflake client PlayStudios made that point clear at our symposiums.

And the benefits are not limited to technology companies. The University of Notre Dame spoke about how they improved both performance and analyst productivity by migrating from an in-house data warehouse appliance to Snowflake.

Building on what we learned at our symposiums this spring, we approach our fall Cloud Analytics City Tour to learn new insights in how people and organizations are using data. Today in New York, we’ll hear David Linthicum, CTO & CEO at Cloud Technology Partners and the #1 Cloud Industry Analyst Influencer as rated by Apollo Research, share insight into how cloud is being used for data management and analysis across different industries. We will also hear from Accordant Media regarding how the use of cloud technology in their data handling has super-charged their products and businesses.

If you haven’t signed up already, you can do so at http://cloudanalyticscitytour.com/new-york . We’ll also be bringing our City Tour to other cities including Denver, Dallas, Seattle, San Francisco, Chicago and Los Angeles where we’ll have the chance to hear from thought leaders including Dave Menninger of Ventana Research, Claudia Imhoff from Intelligent Solutions, William McKnight from the McKnight Consulting Group, Tony Cosentino, Noel Yuhanna of Forrester, and more. You can see the full schedule and register for a city near you at http://cloudanalyticscitytour.com.