Self-service data preparation, which we define as empowering business users and analysts to prepare data for themselves prior to analysis, is often cited as the next big thing. In fact, Gartner predicts that “by 2017 most business users and analysts in organizations will have access to self-service tools to prepare data for analysis”. To me, this sounds like a wake-up call for IT professionals.
The most unique part of the self-service data preparation trend is that goes beyond the office of the CIO. It is a huge step forward for data-driven organizations as a whole. If done well, it will enable anyone to put data at work in their working context whether it be IT, finance, marketing or anything else. In fact, a recent Mckinsey survey found that the use of self-service digital and mobile aids help workers do their jobs more efficiently. This is what we call “the last mile of Business Intelligence and Data Integration”. Self-service enables an organization to not only dramatically extend the reach of data, but also its applicability across any operational tasks.
Introducing Talend Data Preparation
Talend Data Preparation is our proposition to enable business and IT teams to be at the forefront of this major trend. It will empower any decision-maker in your organization to quickly prepare data so they can spend more time using it for analytics and operations.
Look at any organization today, and you’ll find that data is everywhere and it’s relatively useless without being put it in context for consumption. Business analysts spend way too much time making data ready for analysis: find the data source, discover its content, cleansing it, standardizing so that it aggregates correctly for analysis and connects with other data points. 80% of the time for data analysis is spent repetitive tasks, which leaves only 20% of time in getting and sharing the insights. Talend Data Preparation brings efficiency and productivity to those analysts for creating clean and valuable data in minutes, not hours.
But we designed Talend Data Preparation to reach a larger audience than the business analyst. Digital transformation is not only about empowering a happy few. Every operational task in any business group is a candidate to becoming more data driven. During the roll-out of this product we spoke with business users across all departments in Talend, from marketing campaign managers to financial controller, from digital marketing managers to sales admins. We found that operational workers are spending hours in doing these repetitive tasks with their data. They use Excel rather than Tableau or another similar BI tool. Data Preparation can drastically reduce the amount of time spent on these tasks so Marketers and other business users can get to doing what they do best, rather than struggling with Excel!
This differentiates Talend Data Preparation from most of its competition, since most of them are designed only for a specific audience, such as Business Analyst or Data Scientist. Targeting a specific audience leads to creating another data silo, which might add to the data access pain rather that curing it. In contrast, not only Talend Data Preparation is designed to address the needs of different personas, but it fosters collaboration between them. Even more importantly, it provides a sound way to reconcile IT and Lines of Business so that they can unlock data collaboratively. Self-service is not “Do It Yourself”, because data democratization is not anarchy, it needs control, rules, and governance, otherwise it will fail.
In fact, Gartner predicts that many organizations are actually on the way for self-service failure: “through 2016, less than 10 percent of self-service BI initiatives will be governed sufficiently to prevent inconsistencies that adversely affect the business“.
Clean Data, 1 Click Away
The good news is that today, you are just a click away to start delivering on the promises of self-service data governance. Data Preparation Free Desktop has been released. It’s the first Open source tool in this market, so you can download it for free. As its name suggests, it runs on a desktop so that you can install it in a few clicks and get hands on in a matter of clicks. We designed getting started videos and training guide to turn you into a data hero in a matter of minutes.
In addition to what you’ll experience once you downloaded the Free Desktop, the commercial version (that will be released in Q2) will add enterprise class capabilities: multi-user, role-based access; collaboration and data governance; shared inventory of published certified data and other enterprise data; support for hundreds of data sources and targets; high performance server-based data processing. And because it will be delivered as core components within Talend Data Fabric, it will bring self-services across every Talend integration scenarios, from Data Integration to Big Data, from real-time integration to Master Data Management.
Believe me: Talend Data Preparation is an easy catch, it will bring immediate value to your daily job, allow you to reach quickly new milestones in your data journey… and it is fun to use. We’d love to have your on-board and get your feedback (and we even designed a nice feedback form into the product just for that)!
Leave your comments on what you think about Talend Data Preparation below or tweet me @jmichel_franco!