Being data-driven means leveraging deep insights to make the best decisions, every time. But to be of value, those insights have to come from rich data, engineered to meet your specific needs. Too often, organizations face the challenge of having too much data in too many places and too many formats, which makes it difficult to have a clear understanding of exactly what knowledge exists. From spreadsheets and CSV files, to internal databases, IoT sensors and system logs — an overflow of data can be overwhelming, and can even become a hindrance. Simply put, scattered data is not helpful, but with the right roadmap and tools, data itself can become the solution to your most pressing business problems. The first step to getting a handle on the situation, is to ingest.
Laying the Foundation for Effective Data Ingestion
Ingestion, or pulling in the data, is the first step to turning data into problem-solving insights. This may sound simple enough, but data ingestion is actually a sophisticated data engineering process that involves collecting the right data from various sources into one location, where it can be cleaned, curated, and stored for future use.
For your data ingestion process to be as effective as possible, you need to first ensure that you lay the right foundation. This involves:
- Discovery: Defining your data strategy. To do this, you’ll want to get an in-depth assessment of your current situation and outline your most important business problems and goals.
- DevOps: Automating your infrastructure for data pipelines. To optimize your solution, DevOps experts will automate the infrastructure required to set up data pipelines that will be designed to meet your needs, as defined during Discovery.
Laying this foundation allows you to ensure that your ingestion process will provide you with what you need to succeed. Below, we’ll explore the roles that Discovery and DevOps have in getting you ready for the first step of your data journey.
Discovery | Defining Your Data Strategy
The key to successfully becoming data-driven is knowing what you want to do with your data. What business problems are you looking to solve, and how can your existing data help you accelerate those solutions? This process of discovery is crucial, as it will be the backbone of your data strategy roadmap.
When Lixar experts help businesses move towards being data-driven, we begin with a discovery session wherein we take the time to assess and understand:
- Business drivers
- Existing infrastructure and systems
- Pain points and inefficiencies
- Data sources inventory
- Data governance and regulations
Armed with this knowledge, we can help you define your data strategy, and draw out specific use cases that represent your short and long term goals. By identifying which data sources best support these goals, we learn what has value, and what does not. By honing in on the right data, we can be sure that the results will always be meaningful to you.
DevOps | Automating Your Infrastructure for Data Pipelines
Having this deep knowledge into your current situation allows our DevOps specialists to create sophisticated pipelines to handle the Continuous Integration (CI) and Continuous Delivery (CD), ensuring that the infrastructure and applications needed to support your target environments are up to date for each project milestone and release. Having this automation in place to stand up new environments is critical to the success of the project, and to be certain that data engineers have the right tooling and technologies to focus on developing quality ingestion pipelines.
Once the pipelines are set up, ingestion is scheduled so that you always have up-to-date results that can be analyzed on the fly or at a future time. This flexibility keeps interruptions to daily operations to a minimum, and instead, allows you to focus on optimizing operations by making decisions based on relevant, real-time data.
Getting Started with HeroPath
Building on over 20 years of experience helping businesses go digital and become data-driven, we developed a modern data platform, HeroPath, designed to be a customizable and scalable solution for any organization looking to begin or improve their data journey. Our accelerated infrastructure is unique in not only its built-in flexibility that allows us to always select the best components for your needs, but also in our ability to stand it up in just a day, rather than in weeks or months.
HeroPath is designed to ingest a high volume of data, from a variety of sources across entire organizations, and create one unified pipeline. The ingestion stage is not only quick, but cost-effective. We use an Azure cloud environment that can be scaled up or down, so that you only pay for what you need, as you need it.
- DevOps expertise to automate infrastructure
- Acceleration built on 20+ years of experience
- Ideal for high volumes and varieties of data
- Cost-effective cloud solution that scales to your needs and budget
For more information about our data solutions, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org. And stay tuned for more in our HeroPath Journey series, with upcoming articles on Transforming Data and Engaging with Data.