An Overview of Business Databases and Their Challenges

A database refers to an organized assortment of essential information that is usually kept electronically within a computer system. An inclusive software program known as a database management system (DBMS) regulates the database. TheDBMSis an interfacethat connects the end-users to the database. It allows themto retrieve, save, edit, or delete the information within the database in a systematic manner.The DBMS even performs numerous administrative operations to oversee and control a database. These include tuning, backup, performance monitoring, and recovery. Microsoft Access, FileMaker Pro, Microsoft SQL Server, dBase, and Oracle database are some of the popular DBMS software programs available in the market.

Types of databases

Businesses can choose from a wide variety of databases for their commercial activities. When it comes to selecting the right one, they need to decide how they intend to use the information within it. Databases are generally classified into the following broad types:

  • Relational database where information within it is organized into a set of logical tables containing rows and columns,
  • Objected-oriented databasewhichrepresents the information it contains in the form of objects.
  • Distributed database comprises of more than one file which are kept in different computer networks,
  • Data warehouses are centralized storehousesof data which designed to ensure fast scrutiny and processing ofqueries,
  • NoSQL databases are the opposite of relational variant where unstructured information commonly used in a web application is stored,
  • Graph database which stores and processes information in the form of graph structures containing nodes, and
  • OLTP database is designed to allow more than one end user to process a large volume of transactions quickly.

There are certain other databases which are designed to perform specific financial or scientific functions which are as follows:

  • Open-source databases refer to those systems which have an open source code such as SQL,
  • Cloud databases store the information they contain in a public or private computing platform using cloud technology,
  • Multimode databases combine two or more database modelsinto a single integrative back-end platform,
  • JSON database is specially made to store, recover, edit and manage the information which is in a document format, and
  • Autonomous databases employ machine learning to perform specific routine tasks of DBA like backups, recovery, tuning, and updates.

How do databases help businesses in decision making?

Businesses have to manage, store, and process large qualities of information relating to their commercial activities. The data could relate to their customers, inventory, production levels, sales, raw materialprocurement, and finance. They need to use databases with user-friendly analytic tools to collect and systematically organize their commercial information. Moreover, specialists from the esteemed company in database management RemoteDBA say the entrepreneurs managing the businesses should be able to retrieve whatever data they need. The reasons why businesses need databases for their activities are as follows:

  1. Database systems allow businesses to maintain a centralized system for storing their essential commercial information,
  2. They can close or monitor the processing of transactions that occur in the course of conducting their activities in the market,
  3. Business can keep track of inventory levels to minimize normal losses such as wastage, and
  4. Allow entrepreneurs to make better decisions based on information on the databases.

Database challenges

Businesses of all sizes maintain database systems that process numerous complex queries and provide their results instantly. To ensure the platforms work efficiently, they employ database administrators to manage and maintain them. They use diverse techniques to enhance the overall performance of database systems. The challenges they face in carrying out their responsibilities are as follows:

  1. The administrators need to systematic organize and manage the vast volume of information enteringthe database systems,
  2. Prevent data breaches and ensure only end-users who have the proper authorization access the databases,
  3. Ensure database system can keep pace with the businesses’ growth needs, and
  4. They need to carry out timely software updates and deal with other problems affecting the databases,

What is data security?

Data security refers to the collective steps administrators need to take to safeguard the database system from potential threats. These could include the insertion of viruses, malware, trojan horses, service denial, hacking, or sniff attacks.Moreover, they even have to ensure authorized end users do not abuse their privilege. Only then can they ensure the information within the database system does not become corrupt. To achieve this objective, they generally take the following security measures:

  1. Enforce stringent access control policies,
  2. Deny access privileges to end-user whose authorization has expired,
  3. Take steps to ensure proper implementation of MVC Architecture,
  4. Encrypt all sensitive information to ensure it does not fall into the wrong hands,
  5. Conduct periodic searches to uncover entry of new information into the database,
  6. Carry out regular internal audits to determine who is trying to get hold sensitive information, and 
  7. Educate the employees of the business on the importance of data security.

Tips for choosing the right database administrators

Businesses should keep in mind the following tips when choosing the right administrator to manage their database systems:

  1. Businesses should hire a database administrator withthe necessary skills and experience,
  2. The database administrator should be aware of the current industry trends that affect the businesses,
  3. The credentials from previous employers should certify that the database administrator is ethically upright as a person,
  4. The database administrator should well-versed in working within an industry where businesses conduct their activities,
  5. The expert should be able to anticipate potential threats to the database system and take appropriate measures, and
  6. The expert should be inquisitive, meticulous, proactive, and have exemplary communication skills.

Databases enable businesses to store and process the information they need to conduct their activities daily. They can choose the relational, object-oriented, graph, OLTP, NoSQL, warehouse mode depending on their needs. Businesses should give paramount importance to the security of the database system they maintain. The database administrator they choose to hire should have adequate skills and experience in the subject. He should even have proper credentials and be aware of the current industry trends. Above all, he should be meticulous, proactive, agood learner and have excellent communication skills