Big Data Pushes Enterprises to the Cloud, Opening the Door for Partners

Wondering if adding cloud services to your portfolio is a mandate? In the era of Big Data, it may very well be. A survey of IT executives reveals that Big Data is now a mission-critical need for enterprises, and that the need for real-time processing of that data is significant and growing.

The findings were the result of a survey that GigaSpaces Technologies did of 243 IT executives and developers spanning various industries, including financial services, e-commerce, government and telecom, to find out what their goals and concerns are regarding Big Data in their organizations. A full 80 percent of responders indicated that Big Data was important to their business, with 43 percent indicating that it’s mission critical.

As Big Data invades the enterprise, there is also an increasing desire to use the cloud to gain benefits of economy and agility. Accordingly, the survey found that most companies have plans to move their Big Data to the cloud, or are considering the option.

The results were somewhat surprising in the degree to which these areas intersect – only 20 percent of respondents indicated they have no plans to move Big Data apps to the cloud. But 44 percent of responders indicated they plan to move their Big Data application to the cloud or have already begun to do so.  Among the 34 percent that were unsure, primary concerns cited regarding a move to the cloud were scalability and security. Some responders reported that they are working on a private cloud environment in order to gain the benefits of the cloud without the perceived or actual risks of working in a public cloud environment.

To get an even better idea of whether those moving or considering a move to the cloud are running mission-critical or non-critical Big Data apps, the questions of the business importance of Big Data was cross-referenced with the cloud plans question, and the results support the idea that enterprises want, plan, or need to move their business-critical apps to the public cloud: 80 percent of those defining their Big Data apps as “mission-critical” to the business are planning or considering a move to the cloud, while of those who consider their Big Data “somewhat important,” the number was 75 percent for the cloud move.

“The exponential growth of data is a challenge nearly every company will have to deal with at some point, and that they will need infrastructure for their business apps that can carry them into the Big Data era with minimum disruption,” said Adi Paz, executive vice president of marketing and business development at GigaSpaces.

The take away for partners? It’s clear that data traffic is rapidly increasing, regardless of vertical, among end users. And, the processing of the data—for instance, the ability to implement searchable digital medical records and X-rays in a medical environment– is of mission-critical importance. Often enterprises are interested in cloud-based tools for this, along with back-up, querying and security add-ons.

The survey also found that for companies handling Big Data, the need for real-time functionality is both significant and growing – more than 70 percent already need to process streaming Big Data, with half that number needing to handle both high volume and high velocity. The survey indicated that there is increasing readiness to use streaming solutions to deal with the challenges of Big Data and speed up Big Data processing. However, only 12 percent have adopted real-time event processing tools. This suggests a possible gap in the market, where enterprises still have not found the right solutions that combines the ability to handle massive data while also providing speed—a potential consulting opportunity for savvy channel partners.

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