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March 07, 2023

2023 State of Data Management Solutions for Digital Natives

In recent years, companies that have embraced digital native practices have experienced considerable change and growth by placing technology at the heart of their businesses. These companies follow a culture that promotes innovation, uses agile operating models, and often relies on predictive analytics to maximise their performance to deliver high quality results. In turn, this comes with a lot of data to manage and a unique set of challenges that manifest in their data infrastructure projects.

In this report, commissioned by Aiven and authored by SlashData, we investigate the evolution of the data management landscape at digital native companies in response to changing environments (both internal and external). With the ongoing effects of the recent global pandemic and the European energy crisis, many businesses lost access to physical workplaces or had to shut down entirely. On the positive side, adapting to change and overcoming external challenges builds resilience and stamina that can even lead to growth.

For companies that aim to scale fast, rapid change and quick response are part of the challenge. We will primarily focus on the big picture of tech and tooling decisions, and how practices differ based on company growth rates. We asked our respondents to identify the number of employees that their company has and by how much this number has changed over the past 12 months. For organisations that have more than 25 employees, we define those that have increased their full-time equivalent headcount by more than 50% as fast- growing, and others as having experienced conservative growth. It is important to identify the practices and trends that can be of benefit to either business model.

In this report, we use the term fast growth to refer to the overall approach of swift innovation and response to change that is necessary for companies that are focussed on increasing their personnel and tooling. We will begin by examining the current state of adoption of the most popular data management systems and their associated hosting preferences among our respondents. Following this, we will look at the past and the future of data management by taking a look at which data

management tools our respondents stopped using and which ones they are planning to adopt. To supplement this, we will take a deep dive into the reasons why they have adopted the data management tools that they are currently using and what led them to find alternative solutions than those that they have previously tried or evaluated.

Finally, we will shift our focus towards the perception of the future importance levels of certain selection criteria among technology professionals when considering a Database as a Service (DBaaS) vendor. The findings of this report are based on data collected from an online survey designed, produced, and carried out by SlashData, which reached nearly 500 IT professionals involved in data infrastructure operations at digital native companies worldwide over a period of four weeks in Q3 2022. Profile distributions of the respondents can be found in the appendix.

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