Is Big Data Structured or Unstructured?

Managing structured, unstructured, and semi-structured data together poses a challenge. From data silos to storage issues, big data is hard to organize.

Marcel Deer - Writer for Unleash
By Marcel Deer
Kelly Hendrickse - Editor for Unleash
Edited by Kelly Hendrickse

Published June 12, 2023.

Big data is a vast body of information made up of structured, unstructured, and semi-structured data. Structured data—such as credit card information and DMV databases—is closer to our idea of a traditional database and is widely used across industries. Unstructured data is harder to standardize but makes up 80-90% of data. It’s constantly generated in the form of images, videos, presentations, and other media.

So, considering big data is captured and formatted in various unconventional ways, how can businesses effectively manage it?

Big Data Management

Given the expected 11% growth of the global big data market between 2021 and 2026, the organization, processes, and governance of data become increasingly crucial for business efficiency. Modern companies deal with large volumes of all three kinds of data: structured, unstructured, and semi-structured.

Some challenges of dealing with this much data include:

  • Data silos: These contain isolated or inaccessible data and occur when multiple departments store data. This can lead to critical internal knowledge gaps and the creation of unnecessary duplicates, wasting valuable storage space.
  • Shortage of experts: Big data requires trained data engineers and analysts to manage it properly. Companies often sit on large volumes of actionable data simply because they don't have the resources to hire experts.
  • Storage issues: When dealing with all three data kinds, a company's internal data sources can expand at an unmanageable rate. Even in a paperless world, storing large volumes of data takes up server space and creates storage issues.

✶ Find out more about data silos and data lakes

Handle Big Data Easily With Unleash

To help your organization grow and avoid the setbacks of variously formatted data, you'll need the right tools. With Unleash's AI-enhanced search feature, you'll achieve greater productivity because you can sift through your structured, unstructured, and semi-structured data easier and faster. If you're ready to streamline your data management, try Unleash today.

Unleash AI Search App

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