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As a business owner, do you ever face the challenge of collecting and analyzing data fragmented across different sources?

Would you like to generate actionable insights, but aren’t sure how to leverage your existing data? Are you struggling to properly track orders and sales data in an integrated capacity? Are you facing data fragmentation in your business?

If your answer is yes, then this blog is for you.

We expect the amount of data to touch 572 zettabytes daily by 2030. Today, we are creating more data in a second than we created in decades just a few years ago. Naturally, this exponential trend is a clear indicator that data is proving to be a resource of great value.

Fortunately, it is a resource that every company can create and judiciously use. When analyzed correctly, data can generate tremendous value for a business and help it grow.

However, multiple organizations are struggling to make the most of this valuable resource. They find it difficult to locate, manage, and protect critical digital assets because data is frequently fragmented and stored in multiple locations and data silos.

This problem is Data Fragmentation.

So let’s start by understanding, What is Data Fragmentation? What causes this condition to occur within companies?

The internal complexity of an Online Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) business is almost second to none. Because there are so many interdependencies among various departments, every business owner’s goal boils down to a single focus on simplification. This goal of simplification prevents them from enforcing data storage uniformity across their organizations.

After all, the data of potential leads would look significantly different from the data collected by the finance team. As an OEM Dealer and distributor, you are well aware of the many touch points you have with external and internal entities in order to maintain a smooth operation flow.

Providing every department the flexibility to operate as independent silos might sound like the macro-management we should applaud. However, this practice leads to a massive amount of data storage

  • in the cloud and on-premises locations
  • in infrastructure silos that don’t integrate and include multiple copies of the same data

This is Data Fragmentation.

The term “Data Fragmentation” usually refers to secondary data. (information that has already been gathered and is readily available from other sources) The vast majority of an organization’s total data volume is usually secondary data.

With data fragmentation, organizations don’t know what data they have, where it’s stored, and if it is protected and in compliance. It is akin to crossing the road with your eyes closed. You might reach your destination safely, but you won’t have any means to spot any oncoming danger.

So just how common is this problem?

According to a recent survey of over 900 IT decision-makers, 87% of respondents feel their secondary data is dispersed across silos and is or will become incredibly difficult to deal with in the future. That is roughly 9 out of 10 companies.

On the surface, this problem might seem to have a relatively simple solution. Just have your data stored in integrated systems and eliminate duplicate entries.

But simple solutions become difficult to execute when one is dealing with multi-million dollar businesses with complex structures. At Forty4Hz, we take pride in deconstructing complex problems into workable solutions.

So here are a few actionable steps you can take to resolve the problem of Data Fragmentation.

1. Understand your company’s Data Architecture

Many businesses fall into the trap of deploying one or more vendor solutions to solve the problem without first understanding it. Instead, enterprises need to figure out a way to merge all these different business verticals onto a unified infrastructure such as a single user interface. This can be done by either auditing every part of the existing workflow or integrating a turnkey solution with preloaded industry-specific KPIs to track, measure, and analyze all the existing data. Click here if you want to learn more about such a solution.

2. Assess the number of data copies or copies of your business currently stores

Statistically, companies that do not have data quality initiatives in place suffer from around 10-30% data duplicacy rates. This is wasted data storage which not only slows down existing IT capabilities but exposes the organization to data compliance violations.

While data copies are highly relevant in use cases like testing, backups, and disaster recovery further fragmentation of these copies causes overburdening of an already siloed data architecture in industries like OEM dealers and distributors. Getting a clear picture of your company’s current status vis-à-vis data duplicacy rates will prove as a good starting point to assess the level of existing damage. Just like a doctor does not operate without an MRI, businesses cannot resolve data fragmentation without understanding the extent of the problem.

3. Understand the current segmentation of On-Premise and Cloud Storage

We all are familiar with the concept of “too many cooks”. The same principle applies here. The cloud offers unparalleled agility, but many organizations lack insight into how data is being stored in the cloud and what that means for their business. Most companies struggle to manage and work with data that’s stored on-premises and on the cloud in sync.

To resolve this issue, you need to maintain a single management dashboard for all workloads in these different sources of data (cloud and on-prem). This will deliver a clear picture of how the cloud is being utilized across the enterprise and highlight obvious redundancies.

4. Eliminate Data Silos

Macro management of business processes is a very effective leadership tool. However, for effective data management, uniformity is key.

You need to remove the barriers that create data silos and redundant data copies across different locations.

Multiple departments often resort to primitive data management systems like excel for ease of operations. The limited functionality of these tools renders the data in them to remain insulated from a singular truth at the overarching organization level.

Hence, instead of deploying many point products for analytics, organizations should bring these elements together in one place.

Check out Insia: A No Code, Self-Serve Business Analytics platform that can operate as your business’s single source of truth. The best part? You won’t even need trained professionals to operate this tool. Just put in your query as a google search and let Insia do the rest.

Conclusion

By now, you must have realized that if bad data leads to bad insights, then fragmented data will lead to fragmented insights. Overcoming data fragmentation directly leads to lower costs by not only reducing the number of copies of the same data but, more importantly, providing a single window of insight for the entire organization. With the problem of data fragmentation being resolved, organizations save significant capital that would have been unnecessarily spent on building multiple point products and daily workarounds.

Data Fragmentation currently plagues the OEM industry. Take a proactive step in resolving this today and watch your business take a giant leap tomorrow!

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