Sometimes it seems like cloud technology all that anyone in the tech world is talking about.
But not all companies have adopted a data warehouse in the cloud. We've written this article to help answer some questions:
Let’s explore these key topics one by one.
Question 1 - Do you even want a data warehouse in the cloud?
Of course you do! Look at how fast your data warehouse is growing. Look at the growing number of requests building up for new data warehouse projects, new data discovery sandboxes, new departmental marts, faster query response times, etc. Every IT department is looking for a silver bullet that can magically help them meet the growing demands for data access coming their business units. That silver bullet would be cloud.
Question 2: What can you expect from a cloud data warehouse and what are the key benefits? There are many, but we’ve identified the top six benefits for you.
The biggest reason most people move to a data warehouse in the cloud is cost. Storing data on-premise, in your own data center, can get very expensive. And expanding your data footprint often makes it harder to support all of your ever-expanding analytical needs.
Why? Well with an on-premise data warehouse, you can’t independently scale compute and storage - at least not that quickly or easily. Typically, if you need more storage the compute will come with it and you end up having to pay for both.
In addition, you need to purchase as much compute as you need for peak times. So if you’re a retail company worried about how much compute you need to handle Black Friday, well, tough luck—you’re stuck with that much compute for the whole year.
Fortunately, it doesn’t have to be that way.
With the best kind of data warehouse, your system can instantly and flexibly scale to deliver as much or as little compute is necessary, whenever it is that you need it. And, because compute and storage are separate, you only need to purchase what’s essential. Lastly, you also don’t have as many upfront costs—hardware, server rooms, networking, adding extra staff, etc.
In the past, IT teams had to estimate how much storage and compute power would be necessary for their line of business teams—sometimes three years in advance. Getting this information incorrect would mean buying hardware they didn’t need, or facing complaints if there was a lack of storage.
Today, this complicated, detailed planning-and-estimation process isn’t necessary. With the cloud, business users can build their own data warehouse, data mart, or sandbox in only minutes, at any time (night or day). Having a data warehouse in the cloud allows organizations to pay for only the resources they need—when they need it.
In addition, Oracle’s cloud makes it quicker and easier to roll out new data warehouse projects such as data discovery sandboxes. IT and business teams can develop and/or prototype new services and products without spending large sums of money on infrastructure.
Having a data warehouse in the cloud improves the overall value of the data warehouse. It means that business intelligence and other applications can deliver faster, smarter insights to the business since the availability, scalability and performance are better.
As Penny Avril, VP of Product Management said in a previous article about autonomous capabilities for data warehouses, “The value of the business is driven by data, and by the usage of the data. For many companies, the data is the only real capital they have. Oracle is making it easier for the C-level to manage and use that data. That should help the bottom line.”
With a data warehouse in the cloud, you can engage in the full spectrum of data warehousing from business analytics, data integration, IoT, and more as a complete, integrated solution.
Self-service is only truly possible if you have a self-driving database.Just as the cloud data warehouse has many benefits, a self-driving, autonomous data warehouse offers even more benefits. Essentially, you don't really have to worry about managing the data warehouse anymore.
And that means you can benefit from fully automated management, fully automated patching, and upgrades. It means as business user, you don’t need IT to spin up a new data mart for you. You simply log into the cloud and provision a new data warehouse yourself, in minutes.
Data is more available and accessible than ever before.
This allows IT teams to focus attention and resources on more strategic aspects of providing value to the business. But this doesn’t mean that DBAs will be out of work—they still have to manage how applications connect to the data warehouse and how developers use the in-database features and functions within their application code.
In the past, people were convinced that on-premises data warehouses were more secure. But in the same way that they now trust digital copies more than physical paper copies, some are beginning to see a data warehouse in the cloud as more secure than an on-premises system.
But obviously, it all depends on the database company. So choose a company that has a business model that relies on data security and encryption. Preferably, that company should have over four decades of experience with entire departments to protecting your most valuable asset ... Hmmm, who could that be?
Just as an aside, with our self-driving database, the Autonomous Data Warehouse, we have strong data encryption switched on by default to ensure your data is fully protected.
A self-driving database makes everything easier: it takes care of much of the dull but highly valuable work that most people don’t want to do. A self-driving database will help you gain even more ability and capability in the cloud.
For many customers, adopting a data warehouse is just one step on a multi-step journey. You need to make sure that your cloud provider offers a complete path to the cloud that encompasses integrated IaaS, PaaS, and SaaS solutions.
You can simplify your IT infrastructure and minimize capital investments by utilizing your cloud’s services for infrastructure, data management, applications, and business intelligence.
When it comes to choosing a cloud, make sure the one you pick allows for flexible deployment models, enabling you to seamlessly migrate your IT workloads from an on-premises data center to the cloud and back again.
The benefits of having a data warehouse in the cloud are many. But don’t just stop there; think about the benefits of a self-driving data warehouse too—and how much more you could accomplish.
If you’re ready to get started, sign up for a free Autonomous Data Warehouse trial. You’ll be able to:
Get started today:
Step 1 – Sign up for a new, free trial account
Step 2 – Get started with our free Oracle Learning Library workshop
Step 3 – Learn about loading the data warehouse for business analytics