Jason Atchley : Data : 5 Tips from Gartner for Using File Analytics to become Data-Aware

jason atchley

5 tips from Gartner about using file analytics to become data-aware

Courtesy of Flickr user auxesisIn 2014, Gartner highlighted DataGravity in its “Market Guide for File Analysis Software,” a report that explored how storage, legal and security professionals were using file analytics to manage unstructured data. The analysts noted how file analysis (FA) was a growing segment of a larger industry, with many valuable use cases, extending beyond data management to include governance, security, data migration and more. In the report, Gartner also cautioned users not to rely solely on FA technology to fully gather data insights, suggesting that IT administrators and architects use FA along with data retention and other best practices to ensure data governance initiatives could provide value.

Both of these ideas resonated heavily with us. FA is a crucial part of any data-aware strategy, but it’s not the only thing you need to protect your data and turn it into business value. The storage and data landscape has begun to shift since this report’s publication, but its insights continue to ring true. Below are five other tips from Gartner to help you apply FA as your company becomes data-aware.

1. Stop thinking of data insights as reports.

The content of your data can be a static repository or a dynamic business asset. If you’re not investing in ways to apply your data to bigger initiatives, however, you’re going to be stuck with the former.

2. Get support from C-level executives.

If your executives are backing data-driven strategies, you can use data-aware technology and FA results to inform your company’s holistic data governance strategy. Lacking this C-level buy-in, Gartner explains, will allow you to use these insights to alleviate point problems, but you may be limiting their capabilities.

3. Harness the power of data visualization.

“The data presentation provided by FA tools is critical and should be a key criteria, along with the level of metadata and content analysis, when selecting an FA tool,” writes Gartner. When you can visualize the risks in your data, you’re more empowered to stop them.

4. Match FA features to business goals.

Data insights are just facts unless you’re prepared to transform them into business value. Keep your end goals in mind to track progress and improve your results over time.

5. Collect insights as they’re created.

Gartner approaches DataGravity with a different context than the other vendors in this report, since it was the only vendor surveyed that offered users the ability to analyze, classify and protect data at the point of storage. The analysts mention how this unique approach increases support for e-discovery and corporate risk mitigation, as users can quickly identify and secure sensitive data. This value is one reason we expect to see more platforms becoming data-aware as FA technology grows and as users realize the full potential of their data.

Learn how data-aware storage goes above and beyond file analytics with our file services solution brief.

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