May 25, 2023

Database vs Ecosystem and the move towards Data democratisation

Modernising the current business data mindset requires data democratisation.

In the recent past, the power of business data was mostly kept in the hands of a few data analysts with the specialist skills and understanding necessary to properly organise, crunch and interpret the data for their organisation.  

This traditional approach was born out of necessity — the majority of employees were not trained on how to effectively use this growing flood of data.  

Unfortunately, this meant that only certain people could really use data for business decisions. 

However, today this has all changed, and for the better. 

Businesses are realising the need for everyone to have access to data insights to truly harness its power across every department – this is known as “data democratisation”. 

With new tech that now helps anyone (not just analysts) make sense of this data, the demand for data democratisation is more prevalent than ever.  

What is data democratisation? 

Data democratisation means that everybody has access to data and there are no gatekeepers who create a bottleneck to accessing this data. The goal of data democratisation is to have everyone using company-wide data to make better, more-informed decisions with no barriers to access or understanding. 

Data democratisation: a more effective business approach 

Before agile data analytics became a trend, businesses would often spend considerable time searching for data, accessing the data, and waiting for approval to use it.  

Traditionally, IT teams owned most of the business data and users would have to go and ask for access to a certain data set, to which the IT would hand over a large, unruly spreadsheet in return. 

This process has been creating a roadblock for business analysts for decades and has prevented companies from becoming data-driven. It meant data only sat in one area, and the rest of the company had to fight to access it. 

Today, your business cannot afford to be working like this. 

Forward-thinking organisations that want to be at the forefront of their industries need to provide complete access to data so that all departments can make faster and well-informed decisions daily. 

How? The key to unlocking data democratisation is technology

Many businesses now prefer a modern cloud-based data platform that is fast, easy to use and cost-efficient.  

In a business world where data democratisation is more important than ever, breaking down information silos is the first step toward user empowerment.  

However, this cannot be done without customisable analytics tools that are capable of desegregating and connecting previously siloed data, making it manageable and accessible from a single data warehouse 

This is one of the most important Data Science tools for any business

For scalability and reduced administrative tasks, many organisations are choosing Cloud data storage solutions over on-premises databases. While there are many cloud data warehouses today, solutions like Azure SQL and Snowflake are amongst the popular options available today. 

Let’s break down the difference between the two. 

Comparing Snowflake and Azure SQL  

It’s important to understand the key differences between Snowflake and Azure SQL to help business leaders decide which fits best, especially if you’re considering evolving your data analytics function or restructuring your organisation in the near future. 

  1. Use cases and versatility 

Snowflake: While both are built for a range of data analysis and storage applications, Snowflake is a better fit for conventional business intelligence and analytics. It includes near-zero maintenance with features like automatic clustering and performance optimisation tools. 

Azure SQL:  Azure needs a high level of management to make it effective and work efficiently. This does not allow you to manage the cloud-based data centre, so you need to do the management on the ground level which includes monitoring, patching, etc. Although you don’t need to spend the budget on its hardware requirement, you need someone to manage Azure to make it work effectively. 

  1. Architecture 

Snowflake: Snowflake is not built to run on a specific architecture and will run on top of three major cloud platforms: AWS, Microsoft Azure’s cloud platform and Google Cloud. Each virtual Snowflake warehouse has its own independent compute cluster. They do not share resources, meaning that the performance of one warehouse shouldn’t impact the performance of another. 

Azure SQL: On the other hand, Azure SQL is built specifically for Azure Cloud. It is designed from the ground up for integration with other Azure services.  

  1. Cost 

Snowflake: Since Snowflake does not require hardware and software resources, the cost of implementation and maintenance is reduced to some extent. Snowflake allows the use of data storage unlimited at an affordable price and has multiple billing offers to users with a minimum usage of 60 seconds. 

Azure SQL: Azure SQL divides pricing into compute charges and storage charges. Their services are based on the pricing structure and the user needs to take a subscription to better utilise its services for their IT team. 

So, which option is best for your business based on these three factors? 
Let’s shed some light to help you decide. 

It’s time to shift your old database mentality to a new managed ecosystem 

For an organisation that has small, medium, or large data collection, Snowflake provides the best infrastructure to store, manage, utilise and analyse the data, especially for companies that are growing at a fast pace. 

At Minerva, we make this digital transformation remarkably simple

We support your Data & Analytics teams with Data Warehousing, BI, Data Science and Data Pipelines. 

Our data technology specialists also devise robust data strategies and roadmaps to accelerate digitisation, all while ensuring that your data environment and digital ecosystem are built in a way that enhances your business’ ability to perform and scale. 

See it for yourself, here with our proof-of-concept service. 

Minerva can make your business more dynamic and agile – faster  

At Minerva, we provide you with the data analytics capabilities you need to be an agile data-driven business and shift your decision-making from reactive to proactive.  

With Minerva’s business and technology expertise, you’ll get access to tools and solutions needed to effectively execute scenario planning and stay prepared for whatever the future may bring.  

We can work together with your organisation to understand your goals and requirements, before providing you with the right data systems and procedures that you need to get the most out of your data. As always, we help you make better business decisions and become truly better at what you do.  

If you’d like to learn more about how Minerva can help your business, contact us on 1800 646 378 or email  

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