Irrespective of its size and revenue, organizations that run Baan applications extensively should consider doing data archival. Depending on the data transactions volumes, typically an organization should consider data archiving after 4-5 years of going live. Archiving in general is the process of moving historical data from the operational environment to a special archive environment. Archiving historical data is an irreversible process.
Data archiving: Must for an organization
An organization has to decide what must be stored and for how long. Every finance manager must decide how long what data must be stored, in other words, kept in an operational environment for quick use. The reasons which make archiving a mandate are listed below:
- Improving the run time for generating financial reports –In the operational system, the data used for running the reports is humungous. The system has to identify the relevant report from a vast selection and print the same which consumes a lot of time. By migrating the data there is ample space created in the operation system, which makes it all the more easier for the system to pick up the relevant report in less time.
- Improve MRP run times – Material Requirements Planning (MRP) is a complex process imbibing all the elements of planning, procurement and manufacturing, from start to finish. The process is so intricate,that it eats up a considerable amount of time and also occupies sizeable space. Archiving proves to be a savior by migrating a huge chunk of the data and thereby creating a window for MRP runs to be processed in less time.
- Make space for live server memory –By deleting the obsolete data there is an increased longevity coupled with an enhanced efficiency. Improve performance of job processing –As data in the tables grow, running processes tend to slow down. This is where archiving makes its presence felt by unburdening the system and fuelling it up to perform at high speed.
- Data accessible anytime – Historical data can be accessed for reporting purposes with read-only option and hence managers can at any time use the data for any kind of reporting activity.
Planning and execution
An organization’s data archiving strategy is a plan, to ensure that inactive data is stored, managed, secured, accessed and destroyed according to the policies you define. Building a data archiving strategy requires the participation of several stakeholders, including data architects, enterprise architects, database administrators (DBAs), developers, information security and infrastructure professionals, business analysts, and business users.
A data archiving strategy should focus on archiving inactive data periodically. After retaining that archived data for a specific period, consider moving it to longer-term offline storage such as tapes , though an organization’s policies may differ depending on the need to keep data online versus offline. During archival of data there could be slow response on certain processes- MRP, job processing etc. It is advisable that organizations must plan for the archiving service during “lean” business periods, for example during long weekends. The time to complete archiving depends on the data to be moved out of live company to the archiving company.
Once established, an archiving strategy helps clearly define what data you must retain, what you can archive or purge, and how users should access archived data. When an organization is not properly aware about data archiving and how to initiate the process, it is advisable to consult experts who have wide knowledge on the subject. Consultants who possess deep knowledge and expertise on such process can be entrusted to perform and execute the task.
Why do YOU think data archiving is crucial for an organization? Share your views on the comment section. Download our FREE eBook to know more about what should be an effective data archiving strategy and how as a Baan administer you can execute your plan successfully.