When Big Data Becomes More Valuable Than Your Products/Services

A recent global study across 1000 executives conducted by EMC and Capgemini reports the following: “64% of respondents said that big data is changing traditional business boundaries and enabling non-traditional providers to move into their industry, and over half (53%) expect to face increased competition from start-ups enabled by data.”

My take: Eventually any company expecting to compete effectively must become a software company, where data is the primary asset driving business strategy and revenue. Going a step further, by monetizing big data, companies are creating new revenue streams that will actually eclipse the value of a company’s existing products or services over time. This is supported by the EMC and Capgemini study as well: “Among our respondents, 63% consider that the monetization of data could eventually become as valuable to their organizations as their existing products and services.”


The question is how to find gold in the flood of data flowing in and out of the organization to compete effectively, especially against new digital startups. To answer this question, I spoke to Capgemini’s Global Vice President for Big Data Steve Jones who strongly believes the answer lies within the power of a business data lake.

1.  As an industry leader in big data, what is so exciting about a data lake solution?

I’d like to first define what we coined a ‘business’ data lake back in 2013, which is an architecture that supports big, fast, and managed data. Managed data is key since it is the data that is managed or governed in line with business objectives.

What’s exciting about a business data lake is that enables organizations to achieve a very important goal – uncovering new business models through big data analytics. Generating new revenue streams is the primary differentiator between a successful and unsuccessful business.

Because the data is governed in line with the business, organizations have more flexible control of the data to make it accessible for analysis across the entire organization. Business units are no longer constrained by traditional reporting platforms, but rather, can freely discover and distill the information they need to uncover insights. These traditional reporting platforms were sufficient for specific uses in the past, but now there is a new generation of data driven companies creating unprecedented competition. This is why companies need a fundamentally new architecture such as a business data lake to challenge the competition.

2.  Tell us why customers looking to transform their business with big data should work with Capgemini.

Through our experience with big, fast, and managed data, we were the first understand the changing landscape and create the ‘business data lake’ approach. We published the first reference architecture that not includes the technology components, but also the business factor or change that needs to occur to make the business data lake effective.

So not only do we have the experience, but we also have the vision that is needed to help organizations make a fundamental transformation in how they manage, execute, and derive business value from data. This is a multi-year transformation that requires you to work with an experienced partner that helps set the vision and closely works with you over time to achieve results. Again, this includes both the technology and business transformation that needs to occur across the organization.

3.  Why has Capgemini become a premier partner of the EMC Business Data Lake?

Back in 2012 we recognized that big data transformation wasn’t happening fast enough because our large customers were not achieving business results and needed more support. Unlike technology powerhouses such as Facebook, Yahoo, and Google, a typical customer is not equipped to custom engineer a big data solution to support their business needs.

We knew an industrialized approach was the answer to get our large customers transformed and compress the time to value. The EMC Business Data Lake is this approach, providing fully-engineered solution that is simple to deploy and operate. We also like its open partner ecosystem approach since it allows our customers to use products and tools they already have.

4.  What makes EMC Business Data Lake a successful, fully-engineered solution?

EMC recognized that a single company alone is unable to provide an industrialized solution. Instead, they utilized the Federation and developed a partner ecosystem to collaborate and engineer a business data lake solution to remove the headaches and cost of integration. Pre-configured building blocks, core Federation technologies and an open ecosystem allows a typical customer to quickly adopt and subsequently transform.


5.  What customers are the ideal candidates for the EMC Business Data Lake?

Any customer that doesn’t want to set up a specialized IT team just to handle data such as setting up and managing a Hadoop clusters since this requires huge budgets and resources. Also, an ideal customer is one that prioritizes business innovation over technology innovation, since this solution compresses the time to value through rapid deployment.

About the Author: Mona Patel