Uncovering the future of the modern data stack

A modern data stack frees people to focus on what they do best — no matter which team they work on.
March 14, 2022

The modern data stack (MDS) isn’t just revolutionizing how our industry does business. It’s also altering how forward-thinking enterprises utilize ever-expanding data streams in new and creative ways.

I’ve previously talked about our mission at Fivetran to make access to data as simple and reliable as electricity. The modern data stack is at the core of that mission, both now and in the future. It has the power to remove technical barriers, allowing individuals without in-depth technical knowledge to readily access data, no matter what team they work in. 

The fact it’s both accessible and scalable means that SMBs and large enterprises alike can take advantage, creating new opportunities, uncovering inefficiencies and boosting productivity in the process. 

Through close collaboration and consolidation, the entire data industry has the chance to create a new world based around the modern data stack, where access to data can power the next generation of businesses to even greater heights. 

The fact is that current demand for data is greater than we could ever have collectively imagined, thanks to the ease with which customers can add or remove data sources. It’s now up to us all to show how the future of the modern data stack can be harnessed and the impact it can have on our world.

Collaborating on a future vision 

When Fivetran acquired HVR, our aim was to bring together the very best technology and people in the industry to create a new way of integrating and sharing data, whether our customers were start-ups or large enterprises with vast legacy data stacks. The goal is to create a product that has all the capabilities needed by both SMBs and large organizations, with features that are consistent and work together seamlessly.

But the future of the modern data stack isn’t just about us here at Fivetran. It’s also about working collaboratively, helping to realize the vision we share with other pioneering organizations, such as Snowflake, Slalom and Dataiku. It’s a vision that democratizes data and makes it straightforward to analyze and act on information that was previously either unreliable or hard to understand. It’s a world we are in the process of creating at a truly rapid pace.

Working with other MDS-focused businesses is essential to ensuring everyone benefits from this new and fast developing technology. Christian Kleinerman, SVP of Product at Snowflake, says that the future of MDS is all about fostering collaboration. 

“Easily accessing and effortlessly sharing many types of data will only be more paramount to the success of advanced analytic endeavors,” Christian says, adding that this is reflected in the need for a cross-cloud strategy, aimed at breaking down barriers and ensuring safe data sharing and replication.

Such collaboration shows how the modern data stack is primed for consolidation and greater unification, says Hilary Feier, Global Managing Director of Slalom, “Like the iPhone integrating a cell phone, camera and apps with an intuitive user experience, the future of data will be converged and simplified,” she says.

Hilary believes this won’t just result in companies acquiring each other, but also working together on tightly integrated ecosystems. She highlights Snowflake’s venture investments in Dataiku as a positive example of where the modern data stack is headed.

Dataiku’s work using AI to deliver enhanced analytics is an example of how fast the modern data stack is changing the face of business. But Jed Dougherty, Global VP of Field Engineering at Dataiku, says that the transition to the cloud doesn’t mean the MDS will or should bring about the full-scale contraction of on-premises IT expertise, at least not yet.

“It's my belief that, eventually, the cloud will require far fewer administrators and will end up being significantly simpler to manage than on-premise,” Jed says. “That said, during the transition period, it is going to be quite painful until migrations are largely completed and the skillsets of big offshore consulting firms catch up to the market.” 

He continues: “It’s harder to make good decisions around tooling, security, governance and migration when your organization lacks IT talent with the adequate knowledge for key decision advising.”

The future of the modern data stack is multifaceted, with incredible companies working on technology that has the power to reshape how businesses and individuals work.

Watch this fireside chat to hear from me, Christian, Hilary and Jed about what the modern data stack promises for companies looking to make the best use of their data in a fast-changing environment.

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