How to address the smart buildings data storage conundrum


Businesses have always collected information about their physical infrastructure, but this data was infrequently utilized effectively, if at all. Thanks in part to the rise of big data analytics and smart building construction, however, how companies think and use data in these settings has changed dramatically. Still, these configurations can present even more challenges for organizations to address as data warehouses balloon in volume, which is why more corporations need enterprise-class data storage options today.


In just about every industry, big data analytics is dramatically transforming operations by providing teams with more granular insights and knowledge on everything from customer sales histories to how much electricity is used by a particular end user. In a recent GreenBiz Group article, technology and sustainability expert Sudhi Sinha wrote that big data’s potential impact on office space maintenance is especially vast considering how frequently workers exhibit poor behavior when it comes to resource management. For example, a firm could use tools like Hadoop to determine optimal HVAC settings in a given location for every day of the year.


Helping push this trend even further is the rising prominence of smart buildings. In contrast to legacy infrastructure configurations in which the maintenance of an office is handled by siloed operations, smart buildings use modern networking technologies to converge controls. This way, companies can more easily fine-tune their infrastructure management practices to more efficiently use available manpower and energy, according to Ron Gordon, Cisco Canada’s Senior Advisor for Smart+Connected Real Estate. Plus, these systems generate large volumes of data, which can then be used in a big data analytics initiative.


Addressing big storage concerns
Implementing a smart building design in conjunction with big data analytics can yield valuable insights, but first a company must consider the storage part of the equation. Extracting data-driven insights requires organizations to handle and oversee huge data streams, and an analytical effort can quickly turn sour if a lack of storage prevents it from being effective.


According to Sinha, smart building infrastructure can compound this problem even further. Not only do these systems generate lots of data, but this data can be both structured and unstructured. As such, businesses need to first understand the complexity presented by such a situation before moving forward with any initiative. For example, while a cloud computing solution could be the ideal storage answer for one organization, another firm may need to use a large-scale on-premises solution for compliance-related reasons. After all, if a company lacks the requisite storage space for its unique needs, then it may soon find that the IT infrastructure needed to run the entire operation is overrun by smart building-related data alone.


To avoid such a doomsday scenario, turn to FlexITy. Not only will FlexITy help implement the connected infrastructure for a smart building, but their trained team of experts will ensure that the underlying IT infrastructure design in place is equipped to handle the expected data deluge. By thoroughly aligning top-tier technology from industry-leading partners like Cisco with all current and future market considerations, FlexITy ensures that a chosen IT configuration is built to last and to boost profit margins.