If you’re working on improving the way your business runs, you’ve likely adopted a variety of new technologies and approaches when it comes to utilizing data more efficiently. Data is proving to be a powerful asset for enterprises in the 21st century, offering a diverse array of insights that create actionable solutions for companies looking to harness analytics in new ways. That being said, data virtualization (also known as DV) can sometimes be hard to quantify, due to the fact that it takes so many shapes and forms in the businesses that use it.
Being able to report on key criteria and the impact data virtualization platforms are having on your business is important if you want to let business users and other decision-makers better understand why data virtualization is so important for you to use. While you’ve likely created and presented reports on how switching to a different vendor has helped your business or why one vendor is an outperformer compared to another, getting into more complicated topics like data protection and data virtualization can get a bit more complex. Here are a few tips to keep in mind when it comes to creating a data virtualization landscape report of your own.
Don’t reinvent the DV wheel.
When tackling any data virtualization (DV) task, it’s important to take a look at what’s come before you. Especially if you’re new to reporting on big data and analyzing historical data rises, it can be difficult to pinpoint what key criteria is important to report on. Thankfully, there are other examples of what a high-level key criteria report looks like online, such as the one crafted by GigaOM. Taking a look at the 2020 GigaOM data virtualization report, you can see the variety of aspects of DV that GigaOM feels are worth reporting on independently.
For example, one thing you may note from GigaOM’s radar report is just how far-reaching data virtualization is. From social media to machine learning and different APIs, there’s a wealth of details to report on and account for. While it’s easy to become overwhelmed by the sheer amount of Kubernetes and premises environments, the GigaOM radar can help focus your efforts on a few key areas, including innovation, technical specifications, and execution, as well as different vendors.
Focus on clarity, not complexity.
While GigaOM’s report is extensive, it doesn’t overwhelm readers with its complexity. This is an important lesson to think about and implement as you’re working on your own data virtualization landscape report. You don’t need to overwhelm the people you’re presenting to with too much information about why ad-hoc access and data protection are beneficial or offer a lower cost than alternative methods. Instead, by focusing on key criteria, you can create a presentation that’s understandable without being overwhelming.
The last thing you want is to get stuck in the weeds during your presentation, as this can risk diluting your overall takeaways. Keeping things high-level—even as you have greater detail with which to field questions—allows you to make your key points clearly and emphatically.
One way to keep things clear is to use visuals to help your audience further understand the implications of the data you’re referencing. Especially if you’re working with very large numbers, it’s hard for the human brain to wrap its mind around comparisons between numerical data points alone. Visuals are a great way to help provide context to your quantitative data, while also serving as a memorable reference point in future conversations about data virtualization. From bar graphs and line charts to flow charts and Venn diagrams, there are dozens of options to consider when it comes to spicing up your presentation.