Every enterprise has a vision of becoming data driven. While the COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated digitalization efforts, the ability to curate real-time data across the ecosystem and use it for faster decision making and better customer experience, remains a challenge for many. Adding to the challenge is a proliferation of systems of engagement and a multifold increase in sources of data that need to be captured and analyzed on a real-time basis.
Enterprises that can capture data and related changes in real time can unlock new customer interaction opportunities hitherto not possible. This capability can be used for real-time analytics, gaining faster insights for better decision making and immediate response to business events – providing a unique competitive advantage.
Challenges in data replication
One of the key challenges that enterprises face is establishing reliable, low-latency mechanisms to capture the data triggered by change events, such as inserts, updates, and deletes from heterogenous sources. Setting up these services and building an end-to-end solution is cumbersome and has long lead times as each source needs to be looked at separately, along with its structure and nature of data. And, implementing such solutions require licensing third-party tools, building the infrastructure foundation, and diverse skill sets. Given this complexity, these solutions become difficult to maintain and manage - driving up the total cost of ownership.
Deploying the right solution
Change data capture (CDC) is an approach to data integration where change events are captured from various source databases and replicated to a data destination such as a data warehouse. An optimal solution should be easy to configure, accommodate the growing number of data sources (on-prem and cloud), and provide the ability to replicate to multiple data destinations. Flexibility is important as the solution should adapt to a wide range of use cases, such as capturing event data on a real-time basis, moving data from multiple sources to a data store, and database migrations with minimal downtime to applications.
A robust change data capture and streaming solution helps:
Synchronize data across disparate sources reliably and with minimal latency to provide real-time streaming data for analytics, enabling better insights and informed decision making
Provide serverless architecture to help scale up and down seamlessly with minimal downtime, and without having to provision or manage resources, addressing the challenges of traditional on-prem solutions and total cost of ownership
Create easy-to-use setup, configuration, and monitoring experiences enabling faster time to value
Implementing and managing CDC and replication services
A trusted global system integrator and managed service provider can bring in significant value for enterprises in their growth and transformation journey. Deep understanding and experience on various data integration patterns, change data capture and replication solutions, the ability to handle integrations across the ecosystem, and managing and accelerating the cloud journey are key expectations from a managed service provider.
A global system integrator can bring to the table the following key tenets to implement a robust solution:
In-built security and access mechanisms to support multiple secure, private connectivity methods to encrypt and protect data, both at rest and in transit
Standardization, normalization and unification of every event’s data types from the source database type into a unified streaming type to allow downstream processing in a source agnostic way, thereby enabling easy addition of new data sources with minimal changes
Integration with other data platforms and services allowing ease of usage across the ecosystem of tools and platforms
In-built flexibility and scalability to be accurate and reliable, with transparent status reporting and robust processing flexibility in the face of data and schema changes
Finally, the contextual knowledge of an enterprise’s business content, domain knowledge, data estate, volume of data, frequency of events to be captured, integrations and transformations required, and the foresight of its vision to choose the platforms and services that can enable realization of business value from data through operational reporting and real-time analytics, are also important criteria.
Accelerated business value
A cloud-native CDC and replication service, such as Google’s Datastream, enables real-time analytics by synchronizing data across heterogenous databases, storage systems and applications reliably, and with minimal latency and downtime. The serverless architecture seamlessly and transparently scales up or down in real time as data volume changes. It is integrated with dataflow CDC templates and data fusion replication to provide an end-to-end, flexible solution that makes data replication seamless. It also provides the security, reliability, and the transparency that companies are looking for to accelerate value from data and use it for competitive advantage.
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