What is Data-as-a-Service (DaaS)? Understanding the benefits, and common use cases

[ This article was originally published here ]

This blog was written by an independent guest blogger.

If you were looking at all the opportunities data unlocks for your businesses, you’ve probably stumbled upon DaaS. DaaS stands for data as a service, which may appear as something overly complicated and expensive to consider. It’s quite the opposite, and it has the power to help a company leverage IoT and cloud data without investing heavily in infrastructure and software.

To truly assess whether it is complicated to implement and what benefits it delivers, you need to know what DaaS is. That’s why we will go over the definition of data as a service, its benefits, and common use cases.

What is Data as a Service (DaaS) – The definition

“As a service” has become a common term in the software industry, especially in the B2B niche as “Software as a Service”. It refers to one company renting the software to another company. You get a complete software product, ready to be used out-of-the-box. Now let’s go back to data as a service definition with that in mind:

“Data as a service is a software sold by data provider companies and developed to deliver ready-to-use data to end-users.”

There is one big difference between software as a service and data as a service. Unlike SaaS, which provides access to software tools, DaaS leverages software to provide data. It can provide either raw data or enable companies to use an API.

Finally, DaaS may appear as only one service, but that’s not the case: it is a couple of services bundled into one solution. The most common services in a DaaS offer include:

  • Data collection (including various sources such as IoT)
  • Cloud data storage
  • Data lifecycle management
  • Data modeling and processing (including transformation, quality control, and replication)
  • Data marketplace (enabling businesses to get the most relevant data for their needs)

Benefits of data as a service

The next big question you might have is whether it is worth implementing DaaS. That’s not an easy question to answer because every business is unique, especially regarding its data needs. To help you reach an informed decision, we’ve put together a list of benefits that DaaS offers.

  •  Reduced operational costs

Data is great because it can offer answers to so many questions. However, you need a lot of data to have accurate and relevant insights. Storing and processing big data costs money because it requires massive internal storage capacity and processing power.

Once you invest in DaaS, you will no longer need to continuously invest in your infrastructure and maintenance. The DaaS provider handles all these things internally and uses its own infrastructure, staff, and software to deliver ready-to-use data to you.

  •  Increased security

You probably know how hard it is to handle security in your organization. There are many variables to consider, and each of them requires a unique approach and relevant cybersecurity solution. Unfortunately, data is a hot target these days, and cyber criminals seem to be on a constant lookout for backdoors they can exploit to get their hands on valuable data.

When you start using DaaS, you can stop worrying about data security at least. DaaS providers use state-of-the-art cybersecurity solutions to keep data safe. They also have pristine backup policies to ensure you get access to data even if something unforeseen happens.

  •  Achieved compliance

Using data for business purposes is tricky if you want to comply with laws and regulations, especially if you use your customers’ data. You need to work with a team of lawyers to navigate the complex web of regulations, which costs both time and money.

Renowned DaaS providers take care of it for you. They have internal teams of lawyers ensuring that every data set that comes your way is not only ready for use but also legal to use. It helps you avoid all the nuances related to the legalities of using the data and expensive lawsuits.

  •  Ability to use the data how you see fit

One of the common problems organizations face when using big data is moving from one platform to the other. It often happens when they want to use data with different analytics software, and it can take a lot of time to completely move the data. Plus, there are certain risks of doing it, such as getting data corrupted or ending up with an incomplete data set.

With DaaS, you can forget about moving data from one platform to another. You can use the API to stream the data to any tool you need. It saves time and facilitates the entire process, ensuring the data remains complete and healthy.

Common use cases

While the benefits of DaaS may be attractive, you probably need more information to assess whether it is worth implementing DaaS in your day-to-day operations. The best way to do it is to discover DaaS use cases. That’s how most businesses utilize DaaS.

  •  Advanced business analytics

DaaS can provide you with enough data to run even the most complex and demanding business analytics. It can help overcome one of the most common challenges businesses interested in using data face – small data sets.

DaaS enables businesses to enrich their data sets. Some providers even offer telemetry data collected from IoT. With more relevant data at their disposal, they can get accurate analytics reports and get data-driven insights.

  •  Improved market segmentation

When a business does market research and segmentation, it bases its decisions on the data collected during the research. The bigger the data set, the more accurate results are. That’s where DaaS significantly improves market segmentation, even in niche cases such as email marketing.

With enriched data set on your customers, you will be able to better understand them and discover their unique needs and wants.

  •  Competitor analysis

Competitor analysis is also one of the most common use cases of data. However, organizations are limited to their own data sets, which are often outdated and small. For in-depth competitor analysis, they need access to big data.

DaaS is bound to forever change the analysis of competitors, especially for small and medium businesses. Through it, companies can access comprehensive data sets on their competitors and even assess competition in foreign markets.

With this data, they can also benchmark their business to discover whether their performance and profit are falling behind the industry average.

Final thoughts

Hopefully, the data as a service definition helped you understand what DaaS is and how it differs from SaaS. Given its many benefits to organizations and an extensive list of use cases, it’s safe to assume that the number of businesses using this service will only increase in the future.

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