For those still pondering the relevance of nonrelational, distributed database management systems (non-RDBMS) and/or big data in the enterprise, I wanted to highlight several recent articles and announcements that have come out from the industry since I drafted my recent ISACA Journal article. SHMsoft has made a splash with announcing that they have deployed a big data solution, based on Hadoop, for e-discovery purposes. And, Cisco, EMC and VMware are now offering bundled training on the cloud and big data.
What these announcements mean is that non-RDBMS are moving quickly toward the main stream. With the advent of big data, information systems (IS) professionals have a new paradigm to deal with, but seasoned professionals have been down this road before. E-commerce platforms, anyone? By practicing the fundamentals of business case development, requirements facilitation, project management, incorporating security into the development process, privacy by design, information governance and copious testing, an organization can greatly increase its chances for a successful non-RDBMS implementation.
Once an organization successfully introduces non-RDBMS into the fray, a question may come up as to whether traditional relational database management systems (RDBMS) should be sidelined for all subsequent development projects. The answer depends on the requirements; however, I believe that most organizations will continue to use their RDBMS as needed due to the outlaid capital expenditures spent over the years. With an organization leveraging both non-RDBMS and RDBMS, another question to ponder is whether to cross-train existing IS professionals on this new technology or to have dedicated resources brought on board with this skill set.
Pending budget, I advocate that an organization provision new positions to administer and manage non-RDBMS and/or big data systems; that said, analysts, programmers, project managers and traditional RDBMS administrators (DBAs) should be cross-trained. This is all based on the needs of the business, but one could find a specialty focus within those organizations that already leverage non-RDBMS and/or big data platforms (e.g., Yahoo, Facebook).
Read Steve Markey’s recent Journal article:
“A Primer on Nonrelational, Distributed Databases for IS Professionals,” ISACA Journal, volume 3, 2012