Re-imagining databases – five reasons DBaaS should be at the heart of digital transformation

Article by Thawipong Anotaisinthawee, Country Manager, Nutanix

The sheer volume of data being created by organizations is staggering. Once upon a time, a petabyte was considered a remarkable amount of data – which in reality it still is: a petabyte is the equivalent of roughly 20 million tall filing cabinets or 500 billion pages of standard printed text. However, these days it’s common for organizations to have tens, or even hundreds, of petabytes of data to manage – often filed across multiple databases – requiring significant amounts of storage and resources.

As a company grows, so does its data. However, when databases are managed by legacy systems, they become increasingly burdensome, with slow response times and inconsistent performance, and they become plagued with inefficiencies. Given databases play an integral role in day-to-day business functions, it is imperative companies find new ways to tackle database management.

Databases simplified
According to IDC research, approximately 75 percent of database deployments remain on premises.[1] An unsurprising figure, given that organizations want to keep their most critical IP close by. But as businesses focus on digital transformation, Database-as-a-Service (DBaaS) offers a simplified way of configuring and maintaining an organization’s databases. DBaaS can support automation and self service, regardless of where the database is running.

Here are five key reasons organizations across Asia-Pacific and Japan need to consider DBaaS:

1) Reduced downtime

Security is an ever increasing threat for business, with the number of cyber-attacks having risen dramatically since the pandemic. In legacy environments, patching security vulnerabilities can result in lengthy periods of downtime, which according to a Forrester Consulting study commissioned by Nutanix, equated to US$35,000 per hour in losses from productivity, revenue loss, and downstream impact for a composite organization.[2] For one US airline, security patching and system maintenance would often result in up to 14 hours offline for every single update – 14 hours without the ability to sell tickets, significantly impacting revenue.

However, when shifting to DBaaS, companies gain access to a single management console, which means they can automatically distribute patches across databases faster than ever. In many cases, patches can be made in under an hour. And in the event of a cyber-attack, running DBaaS means databases can be immediately restored, allowing organizations to get straight back to business.

For China’s Jiangsu Province Hospital of Chinese Medicine, automating its databases using Nutanix Database Service was a way of improving business continuity and data recovery.

2) Slash budgets and resourcing

IDC research also shows that almost three quarters (73 percent) of organizations use different tools and processes for their on-premises databases versus their cloud databases.[3] Not only does this result in the company purchasing redundant tools and having to maintain them, it also results in staffing inefficiencies, with database managers spending hours creating and maintaining databases. In fact, the Forrester TEI study reports that database administrator (DBA) teams often need to work overtime and on weekends in order to keep up. According to the Forrester Consulting Total Economic Impact™ of Nutanix Era study, this is overtime which was slashed by up to 50 percent for a composite organization simply by migrating to a simpler database management solution.[4] Further, DBAs often over-provision database hardware to leave overhead for future growth – a cost that becomes obsolete with DBaaS systems which can scale on demand.

Forrester concluded that a composite organization saw a return on investment of 291 percent over three years when migrating to Nutanix Database Service.[5] For India’s RBL Bank, a digital leader in India with more than 8.49 million customers and 1,631 offices, their returns were significant. Leveraging Nutanix Database Service allowed them to cut provisioning times by 90 percent and reduce critical clones creations of databases for key customers to 4 hours instead of 1-2 days, all while saving 90Tb of database storage. Further, RBL’s time-to-market for new services dropped from 2-4 days to 4-6 hours, and it has virtually eliminated IT downtime with a 99 percent cut in EUC service tickets.

3) Improve talent acquisition

Already, the Forrester study shows that interviewed companies found it challenging to hire technologists with the specialized skill sets to maintain legacy databases.[6] Each time a veteran employee leaves or retires, it prompts a knowledge leak, creates a transition gap, and causes quality issues. Now, with Generation Z entering the workforce – a generation of digital natives who expect technology to work rapidly and seamlessly – organizations must be able to offer the most flexible and easy to use cloud based technologies in order to attract and retain the next generation of talent.

Not only are younger, more digitally savvy employees now entering the workforce, but the labor market across Asia-Pacific and Japan is tightening, resulting in organizations planning salary budget increases for 2022. Talent acquisition and retention is becoming increasingly competitive, and companies who refuse to let go of more outdated or clunky systems will fail to attract the best and brightest.

4) Gain rich customer insights

Consumer intelligence is playing an increasing role in strategic business decisions as organizations aim to stay one step ahead of ever-changing consumer behaviors. Databases are a gold mine of customer data, and emerging technologies, such as Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML), can help businesses make sense of this data; detecting patterns and anomalies that would be impossible to detect manually.

However, AI and ML technologies work best in the cloud – deploying them across on-prem databases wouldn’t work in the same way. For businesses that want to track real-time customer behaviors and to stay on top of trends, migrating databases to the cloud and deploying DBaaS not only improves efficiencies, but provides invaluable customer insights.

5) Fast-track digital transformation

According to IDC’s 2022 predictions, at least half of the Asia Pacific economy will be based on, or influenced by digital by the end of this year. Furthermore, direct digital transformation investments will accelerate to a CAGR of 18 percent across 2022-2024, making up 70 per cent of all ICT investments by the end of 2024.[7]

Not only does deploying DBaaS help to improve operational efficiencies, it also helps businesses digitally transform across other areas of the business. App development teams in charge of building new systems and processes need to work off the most up to date, live databases – not duplicate versions that are constantly out of date. Deploying DBaaS paves the way for digital transformation across the rest of the organization.

In Thailand, telecommunication and service provider customers apply Nutanix’ DBaaS solutions to their enterprise database environments to address the growing usage of enterprise databases in terms of capacity, application needs, database

variety, database security and recovery. The database-related workloads are enhanced with the adoption of the DBaaS solution. Benefits with Nutanix include:

– Intalling databases many times faster than before.
– Replicating and cloning databases on demand in 30 minutes or less for testing, processing, and reporting, minimizing the amount of storage space required for those database copies.
– Restoring databases with more than 60TB of data to specified intervals in less than 30 minutes.
– Managing multiple databases, such as Oracle, PostgreSQL, and others, can be handled with a single tool, which simplifies and reduces the expense of utilizing multiple tools.

Databases of the future

Databases are critical to company success, but as we move into 2022 and beyond, data volumes will only continue to explode. The exponential data growth will force organizations to modernize and simplify their database management systems – whether on-premises, in the private cloud, or in hybrid cloud – finding new ways to improve efficiency, save costs, and improve employee experience.

[1] Source: IDC InfoBrief, sponsored by Nutanix, IT Practitioners’ Views on the Challenges of Hybrid Cloud Database Management: Worldwide Survey Results, Doc # US48116921, September 2021
[2] Source: Forrester Consulting, The Total Economic Impact™ of Nutanix Era. A Forrester Consulting Total Economic Impact™ Study Commissioned by Nutanix, October 2020
[3] Source: IDC InfoBrief, sponsored by Nutanix, IT Practitioners’ Views on the Challenges of Hybrid Cloud Database Management: Worldwide Survey Results, Doc # US48116921, September 2021
[4] Source: Forrester Consulting, The Total Economic Impact™ of Nutanix Era. A Forrester Consulting Total Economic Impact™ Study Commissioned by Nutanix, October 2020
[5] Source: Forrester Consulting, The Total Economic Impact™ of Nutanix Era. A Forrester Consulting Total Economic Impact™ Study Commissioned by Nutanix, October 2020
[6] Source: Forrester Consulting, The Total Economic Impact™ of Nutanix Era. A Forrester Consulting Total Economic Impact™ Study Commissioned by Nutanix, October 2020
[7] Source: IDC FutureScape: Worldwide Digital Transformation 2022 Predictions — Asia/Pacific (Excluding Japan) Implications, Doc # AP48483521, December 2021

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