On Tuesday at Informatica World our Chairman and CEO, Sohaib Abbasi, delivered our conference keynote. In keeping with the theme of our conference, he outlined a vision for Data Integration that takes us all beyond traditional boundaries – and supported it with three truly profound demonstrations (which I should point out were all run using production software and which I will cover in a separate blog entry).
Take a moment to consider the changing world that we live in today – the internet has changed our lives profoundly. Today we no longer limit ourselves to using computing to transact business. We also use computing within our homes, our social lives, for healthcare, to plan vacations and way beyond. Today we talk with one another online and we share experiences online in ways that we have never before witnessed.
Our value proposition is to empower the data-centric enterprise – how then can we all leverage this brave new world? Sohaib explained a vision of data integration that pushes us all far further than we have ever been before. In Sohaib’s words:
- Beyond Data Warehousing: Trustworthy and timely data will enable more business imperatives than ever before.
- Beyond Enterprise Computing: Informatica will enable hybrid, virtualized enterprise computing – combining on-premise computing and cloud computing. You will retain control over all your information assets, both on-premise and off-premise in the cloud.
- Beyond ETL: Informatica continues to advance the frontiers of data integration technology with eight technology categories. Now, you can expedite results with a comprehensive, unified and open Informatica platform.
- Beyond Relational Data: Our goal is enable you to leverage all data, including all the new social media – which will take you beyond relational data. Indeed we will extend your existing Informatica skills to leverage all the new data, even from Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter.
- Beyond Informatica: We now offer the industry’s first Marketplace dedicated to you, the data integration specialists. By leveraging the power of the community, you will be even more productive”.
Let me share with you a few further thoughts on these specific topics:
Beyond Data Warehousing:
Here the key message relates to enabling your business imperatives. Sohaib gave a number of examples of enterprises using data integration to further their business advantage – including:
- Large pharmaceutical giant (reducing time to market for new drugs),
- Samsung (saving millions of dollars by modernizing applications),
- EMC (decommissioning applications while archiving critical data),
- Computer Associates (outsourcing CRM to salesforce.com),
- Federal Customer (event-based maritime security),
- Ensenda (fast onboarding of new partners),
- DirectEdge (the third largest exchange in the U.S. reducing trading latencies to gain competitive advantage).
Clearly, Data Integration today delivers proven business value to enterprises around the world looking to become data-centric enterprises.
Beyond Enterprise Computing
Here the key message is all about risk and avoiding lock-in – not only in the face of increasingly combative hostility between the traditional computing mega-vendors, but also in terms of the risk of losing control of your data as it moves into the cloud. Sohaib commented
“Can you afford to be left behind as the platform shifts to Cloud Computing? With Informatica’s pioneering leadership, you retain control over all your data, on-premise and off-premise in the cloud”.
Clearly, Data Integration today helps you to avoid lock-in and ensures you remain in control of your data both on-premise and in the cloud.
Here the key message is the relentless pace of innovation in broadening the role of data integration from its heritage of ETL into eight highly differentiated technology areas. The Informatica Platform now enables you to integrate data within the traditional enterprise (Enterprise Data Integration), control data in the clouds (cloud data integration), share data with your partners (B2B Data Exchange), archive data for efficiency and eDiscovery (Application ILM) and deliver data at zero latency (Ultra Messaging). To unlock the business value of all this data, the platform enables you to cleanse and gain trustworthy data (Data quality), to detect and act on operational intelligence (Complex Event Processing) and gain a 360 view of your strategic, authoritative master data assets (Master Data Management). Sohaib reiterated that
“only Informatica delivers the comprehensive, unified and open data integration platform to empower the data-centric enterprise.”
Clearly, Data Integration has moved beyond the heritage of ETL to embrace eight key data-centric technologies.
Beyond Relational Data
Here the key message is that innovation is occurring beyond the world of relational data and enterprises must embrace the world of social and large scale data for competitive advantage and brand management. Sohaib commented that “the idea of the relational database is now 40 years old” [quite stunning when you consider the relentless pace of innovation that occurs around us].
“With relational data, you manage transactions. With social data, you manage interactions. The leading social networking sites like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn are built with new data management techniques, beyond relational data. Using social networks like Twitter, enterprises now benefit from proactive customer engagement in real-time. Proactive customer engagement builds customer loyalty and strengthens the brand. In an online social network community, a single blog or Facebook post can affect your company’s brand. The power of social networking can destroy or build a brand. Rather than just analyzing past business transactions using relational data, you can instead analyze the current customer sentiments using social data. And, your enterprises will gain a competitive advantage: by being proactive with current social data, rather than being simply reactive with past relational data.”
Clearly Data Integration is the critical technology to enable enterprises to embrace, leverage and use social data for competitive advantage.
Here the key message is that innovation occurs beyond the boundaries of vendors and occurs within the community. Informatica is embracing this by providing extensibility of the Platform and empowering innovation through our community and our recently launched Marketplace. Both are growing and we’d like all of you to take part. You will no longer be limited to only what Informatica develops and delivers. Sohaib commented:
“Instead, you will benefit in two ways: promote your own ideas and consume other people’s contributions. By harnessing the community, you will mitigate your own risks and deliver innovative solutions like never before. We have an ever-increasing number of software blocks that range from testing facilities to blocks to analyze consumer sentiment on social networking. By reusing these software blocks, instead of writing your own code, you will mitigate your own risks and expedite the time to results. Second, there is a wealth of knowledge on best practices and methodology. By leveraging these knowledge blocks, you will learn from the experiences of others to deliver even better results. Third, there is a growing ecosystem of trained specialists that can further mitigate your risks. You are assured availability of skilled individuals for the success of your projects.”
Clearly Data Integration will continue to innovate in ways that we can only wonder at, and the community will be where this innovation will occur.
This is a vision of Data Integration that I personally did not envisage when I joined Informatica just three years ago. It is a vision that is here today and helps you to become a data-centric enterprise. Our customers continue to tell us that their most important asset is their data. Data Integration enables you to unlock your data and deliver true competitive advantage.
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