Surely Data is Data? No?


Not all data is created equal. But now it can certainly be captured equally.

For long periods of time across the Digital Transformation trends of document management, to Enterprise Content Management (ECM) and now the latest evolution into Intelligent Information Management (IIM); when we’ve referred to data capture, we’ve always meant
structured data. This is no longer only the case.

Capturing unstructured data is now very possible. And just as well, as it equates to 80% of all enterprise data, and is growing at a rate of 55% per year.

So, what is Structured Data?

Structed data capture is a mature and reliable process. It is data that comprises of clearly defined data sets that are easily searchable. An example of such data can be: ABN, phone numbers, clients names, client account codes, invoices numbers & post codes, that you would
find on a document such as an invoice. And this data in turn is stored in a database (e.g. accounting package or ERP system) which can be searched or queried by Structured Query Language (SQL). As mentioned, this structured data makes up only 20% of enterprise data, and
until recently was the only data that data analysts could get reliable access to, to base business decisions around.

And, what is Unstructured Data?

For a long time this treasure trove of data within an enterprise has been inaccessibly locked away from the reach of traditional analytics tools. But more recently analysts can rejoice thanks to technologies such as AI, machine learning, pattern recognition, email trending analysis and text & sentiment analysis. To best explain what this data comprises of, below are some examples of this data type:

  • Media Files: video, audio files & digital photos
  • Social media: data from LinkedIn, Facebook, Instagram & Twitter
  • Mobile Data: Text messages, location data
  • Websites: You Tube
  • Messaging services: WhatsApp, Chat, WeChat, phone recordings
  • Email: The message field of an email is unstructured.
  • Business Application: MS Word
  • Digital Surveillance: surveillance videos and photographs

Will this unlocked data create more commercial business opportunities?

Most certainly it will. Already organisations are capitalising on this available data analysis to gain a competitive edge over their competition.

Hotels can trawl through review websites such as trip advisor, monitor comments and automatically reply based on negative and positive feedback. They can even respond based on the tone of the comments, or if users were interacting with one another.

The automobile industry is heavily analysing social media posts, as car buyers often look to other posters to gather their opinions on car purchases prior to purchasing themselves.

Data, content and metadata are all now more important to your business decision making than ever before. Should you wish to learn more about this area and understand how our ContentIQ Platform could assist you to unlock that 80% of unstructured data in your
organisation, please feel free to reach out for an initial discussion – bryan@csctechnology.com.au