IBM’s Data Governance: Catapulting Businesses into the Digital Future


I want to begin with an unfortunate prediction, with the promise of also sharing a solution. Business leaders who do not harness the power of data will not survive the market competition. While this is a strong statement, it is also one that I am fully convinced by. Allow me to explain.

Just a few years ago, most of us were processing data to learn from the past and predict the future. After preparing sales reports, invoices, analyzing alphanumeric data, and acquiring a sound understanding of a businesses’ status and operations, we felt quite comfortable — even fully prepared — to make critical decisions that would impact the future of our business.

And then we were hit with digital diffusion, a phenomenon that penetrated the very heart of the global economy. In a matter of months, our classic information flows became inadequate, even antiquated. Looking ahead, there is every reason to believe that connected objects will generate more data in increasingly decentralized locations. For this, we will need probabilistic software that is capable of, at once, consuming an unimaginable volume of information while producing valuable insights that are easy to interpret and yet vital to successful business decisions.

You may be wondering: How can we prepare for and manage this new world? My short answer is “data governance” and my longer description follows.

Data governance is a set of practices that improve the dissemination, security, integrity, and availability of data. More than simple figures, the information that we now receive contains instructions that are capable of training probabilistic software. Companies must therefore be equipped with cutting-edge resources and tools to manage the flow of data before it overwhelms them.

I’ve been collaborating with IBM for over 35 years, first as a computer scientist and now as an opinion leader. By simply researching their solutions, I have always been able to find the right answer to any technical problem. More broadly, I learned that in order to innovate you need to engage in research and development. Only then can you anticipate and respond to future problems, like data management.

Spectrum Scale is not only one of the pillars of IBM’s architecture for data governance, it’s also used to power an artificial intelligence that is always on the hunt for information. The technical term for this is “General Parallel File System.” Simply put, this is high-performance software for a clustered file system. Essentially, this computer program organizes data flow and manages data integrity and access — all without slowing down the speed at which information is delivered.

I invite you to view the image below to understand how data is distributed in a modern company that has multiple production units:

IBM Spectrum Scale

Notice that the architecture is comprised of devices that generate a multitude of data from a variety of sources, namely: the periphery, central headquarters, suppliers, and then finally onto customers.

While some of the data is stored in the cloud, other pieces are managed on-site because we consider it to be strategic or confidential. In those cases where the public cloud does not suffice, we support a private cloud which, together with the local infrastructure, forms architecture that is increasingly complex and costly. Throughout these steps, it’s imperative to create backup copies, so as not to risk losing data and to ensure that the data received is intact. Finally, at the risk of stating the obvious, we must not grant anyone unauthorized access.

It stands to reason that each company’s digital future will be linked to data and interconnected through IoT devices and the virtual networks that connect people. There is no turning back now.

Hardly a simple technological advance, this is a paradigm shift towards a new world. A world in which the ability to manage data is a distinctive skill that sets companies apart.

You can read more about IBM Storage Solutions here.

Digital entrepreneur with a passion for knowledge translation | FRSA | B2B Tech Influencer | Author & Speaker | Startups Mentor | Founder & CEO

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