Question

How can unstructured data benefit your business’s bottom line?

Answer

Unstructured data can be very valuable to a business in many different kinds of scenarios. It can help organizations discover new insights by analyzing data that isn't stored in a relational database. Unstructured data is often a treasure trove of helpful information when it is harnessed and used in the right ways.

First of all, most business data is unstructured. Structured data has already been carefully collected and groomed to be stored in a relational database. Unstructured data is raw and stored in a data lake. It includes valuable information contained in email and text messages, rich media, sensor outputs and server logs.

One big reason that companies are moving toward using unstructured data is that object storage and automation makes the analysis of unstructured data much more accessible. Speech-to-text technology can turn verbal communications into text resources that can be effectively mined. By combining the power of AI/ML and speech-to-text, businesses can get a wide range of surprising results with various uses of unstructured data.

The power to do this is profound now – just think about all of the ambient data that exists in somebody's email inbox, or the text messaging threads on their smartphone. To the extent that labor-saving AI/ML applications can gather and analyze unstructured data from text files and documents allows businesses to dig into mountains of useful data that can change how businesses operate in a big way.

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Justin Stoltzfus
Contributor

Justin Stoltzfus is an independent blogger and business consultant assisting a range of businesses in developing media solutions for new campaigns and ongoing operations. He is a graduate of James Madison University.Stoltzfus spent several years as a staffer at the Intelligencer Journal in Lancaster, Penn., before the merger of the city’s two daily newspapers in 2007. He also reported for the twin weekly newspapers in the area, the Ephrata Review and the Lititz Record.More recently, he has cultivated connections with various companies as an independent consultant, writer and trainer, collecting bylines in print and Web publications, and establishing a reputation…