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How analytics reduce cloud storage costs

Companies need analytics to make sense of data warehousing.

In the financial services sector, demand for cloud storage solutions is accelerating as providers try to serve the growing number of users who bank online. While storage drives can house the large volume of business analytics that banks use to improve customer service, some finance IT departments may be hitting a wall. They may require new approaches that apply analytics to storage practices and specifically address structured and unstructured data.

Approximately 60 percent of respondents to a TwinStrata survey stated that they struggled to keep up with rising storage requirements, according to ABA Banking Journal's John Ginovsky. As a result, some companies may delay virtualization projects because of what they perceive as high expenses related to cloud storage. However, the issue may be less related to the costs of storage media and instead caused by inefficient data handling practices, which lead to cold data occupying excessive space.

"It is staggering to see just how many stale, duplicate, and empty files are being kept on expensive primary data by organizations of every size across a variety of industries," said NTP Software CEO Bruce Backa. "Files that have not been accessed in six months or more are prime archiving candidates."

Without analytics or a team of data scientists to enforce smart storage, supply will almost inevitably outstrip demand and negate the savings that businesses may have otherwise achieved by adopting cloud computing services. In a Citrix survey cited by Ginovsky, 35 percent of respondents cited lower expenses as a perceived cloud benefit.

In a piece for The Register, Trevor Pott assessed possible expense-related issues with the cloud. Companies can forgo upfront hardware investment in favor of infrastructure-as-a-service that can be modified as the need arises, but they must be careful to avoid costly vendor lock in.