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How Snowflake Accelerates Data Preparation for the Analytics Era

Chetan Gangwal
October 25, 2021

Introduction to Snowflake Data Cloud:

Are you looking to build up your data warehouse, optimize reporting performance, or find ways to visualize your data more clearly? These are just a few of the reasons why you should consider taking advantage of Snowflake's Cloud Data Warehouse Platform . But what exactly is Snowflake Data Warehouse ? How does it work? And why is it the fastest growing cloud data warehouse solution in the market today?

Is the hype around “data warehouses” justified?

“Investments in Cloud Data Warehouse and Cloud Data Lake modernization accelerated frantically as the pandemic progressed, and we expect to see that trend continue even as it ends,” said Justin Kestelyn, VP product marketing at Yellowbrick Data.

The brouhaha surrounding the cloud and the likelihood of disruptive innovation is great—but how can you tell which technologies will become mainstream and ultimately transform your business? 53% respondents of a global businesswire survey reported Data warehouse modernization, including cloud journeys as the highest analytics-related IT budget priorities for 2021.

Cloud data warehouse solutions are growing in popularity. The business case for the benefits of cloud-based big data analytics is strong, particularly in terms of operational cost savings, ability to scale quickly, and ease of use.

With many businesses becoming more and more data driven, learning how to leverage that data can be a great competitive edge. Cloud data warehouses offer a cost-effective way to harness the power of your existing data and help to improve decision-making by making it possible to analyze and interpret data faster than ever before.

What is Snowflake Cloud Data Platform?

Organizations using legacy and on-premise heavyweight Enterprise Data Warehouse platforms, are limited in their ability to capitalize on data because they are using yesterday’s technology to solve today’s data problems – and definitely not tomorrow’s. Snowflake is the first cloud data platform/warehouse that delivers the performance, scalability and concurrency required to allow you to finally address your most demanding data related challenges.

Today, Snowflake is the fastest growing enterprise analytical platform in history. Every day, thousands of companies across diverse industries use Snowflake to solve their most challenging data problems, including marketing analytics, customer relationship management, fraud detection and prevention, retail optimization, and much more. With powerful yet easy to use features such as machine learning, predictive analytics, and advanced query optimization, Snowflake Cloud Data Platform allows companies to quickly build analytical models that can be used for a variety of applications.

Why is Snowflake the fastest growing cloud data warehouse solution on the market today?

Centralized, shareable data: Snowflake's Cloud Data Platform powerful tools let you organize all your data across cloud services (Dropbox, Google Drive, Box, OneDrive…) and devices (iOS, Android, Windows Phone…) in a single place. The ability to view information stored in other apps in one place also makes it easy to collaborate with other people on projects.

Unlimited, automatic scale and speed: Snowflake Cloud Data Platform is the only data warehouse that automatically scales to your growing data needs, while providing blazing fast query speeds. With other data warehouses, you run into problems when your data grows beyond what you originally anticipated. Snowflake frees enterprises from this problem by making it easy to build a data warehouse that can grow with an organization's needs. Snowflake Data Warehouse gives enterprises access to the information they need instantly, at any time, on any device. It provides unlimited scale and speed for all types of analytical workloads like ad-hoc queries, machine learning, SQL queries and much more.

Simple, cost-effective infrastructure: Snowflake Cloud Data Platform lets you run your infrastructure at whatever level you want, efficiently and quickly, without adding any extra hardware or storage to your current infrastructure. It provides you with an easy-to-use interface for provisioning servers, storage, network, database support services, monitoring, alerting, etc.

Flexible architecture: Foundational to Snowflake’s approach is its architecture—a highly flexible, scalable architecture that enables you to scale up as your needs grow and down as your needs shrink. In addition to supporting both single-instance and multi-instance architectures, Snowflake has an architecture designed to allow the use of multiple databases and/or PostgreSQL clusters, as well as support for various database technologies such as Oracle and SQL Server.

Scalable storage: Snowflake Cloud Data Platform stores data at block level, allowing reads and writes to be accomplished with minimal latency or disruption. The flexible replication engine supports asynchronous replication; enabling applications to create multiple copies of their data without provisioning additional resources.

Scalable compute engines: To power analytics workloads, Snowflake offers a range of high-performance compute. Additionally, Snowflake also includes an in-memory computation engine with the ability to analyze terabytes of unstructured unpartitioned data in seconds using very low memory consumption.

Faster, better decision-making: Companies have to make decisions every day. They must decide what to produce, where to invest, and how much it will cost.

By using Snowflake, companies can answer these questions more efficiently. Rather than making hundreds or thousands of tiny decisions based on tiny data points, a company can use Snowflake Data Warehouse to decide on just a few key things and make those decisions with greater certainty.The improved decision-making capabilities make it easier and faster for companies to turn their abstract ideas into concrete products and services — and ultimately allow them to deliver higher-quality products and services at lower cost.

Looking to Implement Snowflake data warehouse but don’t know where to begin. Start with calculating your ROI!

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So where and how should your business begin with Snowflake Cloud Data Platform?

Yes, Snowflake is a Cloud first platform, and yes, it is the best data platform with evidently one of the highest adoption rates. But is it for your business? We tell you things you should consider when implementing Snowflake for your enterprise.

It is a myth that you must “start from scratch” in adopting a cloud data warehouse, especially if you’ve been using your on-prem infrastructure for some time. In fact, there are few critical keys to establishing a sustainable and adaptive enterprise data warehouse with Snowflake:

  1. Identify your business requirements: Design your data warehouse to meet business needs. To be most effective, your data warehouse needs to support the priorities of your company at this moment in time. If the focus is on AI, for example, it’s important to ensure that high-performance analytics can be delivered with speed and accuracy.

  2. Leverage existing infrastructure standards and best practices: Snowflake Cloud Data Platform brings the data warehouse into the modern era, as an enterprise data platform. Snowflake's architecture provides a simple, flexible way to integrate data, run analytics and derive actionable insights.

    Because Snowflake is an open-source service, organizations can integrate Snowflake with their existing IT infrastructure and infrastructure standards. Snowflake's architecture is engineered to make data more accessible, so analysts can spend less time building and more time analysing. Snowflake's built-in security and governance features protect data, while built-in analytics and visualizations provide insights.

  3. Focus on the metadata and data and not on the storage and compute resources: Data cannot lie, but the way it is analysed and presented, indeed can. Reliable data analysis requires rock-solid metadata and a clean, controlled environment for data preparation that is as open as it is secure. t offers a completely redesigned paradigm that provides more agility, context, and control for data driven enterprises. Snowflake addresses the fundamental shift from compute-centric architecture to a metadata-driven architecture, which has become a primary focus for businesses now.

  4. Data modelling on the go: With Snowflake Cloud Data Platform, data modeling is no longer a one -time effort. It's an ongoing process that starts before you load your first piece of Production data and continues as the needs of your organization change. And with our template-based approach to building your data schema, you can either follow the same structure of your existing data warehouse or embrace schema evolution as new opportunities surface.

  5. Ingest and integrate: Snowflake Data Warehouse supports a variety of ingestion patterns for loading data at scale in a cloud environment. Snowflake's data ingestion patterns provide a seamless path for data to travel. You need to understand the origin of the data you are sending to Snowflake, this way, it is easier to determine which Snowflake ingestion pattern is right for your use case.

    Furthermore, it is also important to determine the right integrations that go with Snowflake, as per your data requirement.

  6. Security: Security is a top priority for your organization, and protecting sensitive data is your top priority within that. Snowflake supports role-based access control (RBAC) over Discretionary Access Control (DAC), which allows you to restrict access to certain tables and views based on the role each user has been assigned.

  7. Nimble Partnerships to help build and maintain a strong data culture: More and more businesses today prefer engaging with a flexible and experienced Implementation partner, who bring in the right expertise of Snowflake and understanding of your business needs. Some Partners also have their own Center of Excellence (CoE), to help customers build a strong foundation and roadmap for complete Data Warehouse Solutions.

Jade Global and Snowflake:

To help our customers, Jade Global has partnered with Snowflake. Whether you are looking for data warehouse or data platforms first time to solve your unique data problems or planning to move to modern data warehouse or data platform, you can trust Jade Global acumen in applying Snowflake Cloud Data Platform to help your organization get the best from their data. We will help you unlock the power of data using Snowflake and our fast and cost-effective Snowflake Cloud Data Platform Implementation, Integration, and Managed Services.

About the Author

Chetan Gangwal, Senior Solution Architect, Snowflake & BI SnowPro Core Certified

Chetan has been with Jade Global for 13 years as Senior Solution Architect focused on data-driven solutions and business outcomes. Chetan’s current role is as Delivery Leader - Snowflake Service Line. He has 15+ years of solid experience designing solutions, building proposals, and managing all levels of large-scale projects. Solid understanding of Business Intelligence, Data Analytics, and Enterprise products.

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