by Anthony Dina

Forrester Study Supports the Business Case for Hadoop

May 05, 2016
Data Center

Research shows the benefits and value


Savvy organizations realize that business value is buried in mountains of data. At the same time, industry disruptors recognize the key to innovation often lies in the Open Source community. When those two streams intersect, as they did 10 years ago, you get Hadoop. The Hadoop platform serves as the centerpiece of many big data projects because of its massive scale, ability to take all data types and affordability—it does not require a pile of money to build.

As affordable and powerful as Hadoop is, many organizations haven’t started their big data journey. It’s not from a lack of motivation. The evidence of value is all around us. We see organizations that build successful businesses that never existed before. We feel the pressure of unstructured data choking existing data pipes.

But in the world that continues to be re-defined by the digital-first, data-driven enterprises, many of us have lead feet. It seems the hardest step in joining the race is lacing up the shoes. And that simply might be in the need for building the right business case for investing.

It just takes a little research to understand the potential ROI. The best practice is to learn from the success of others. To really learn about the problem they were trying to solve and how they overcame the financial friction of downward trending IT budgets. The good news is that the companies who took trail ahead of us have left us plenty of breadcrumbs. It’s just a matter of finding that first piece.

Dell and Intel know that finding the time to build these business cases is challenging. And it’s often the same energy that gets repeated over and over from institution to institution.

So to make this easy for our customers, we commissioned Forrester Consulting to conduct a Total Economic Impact™ (TEI) study to examine the potential ROI that enterprises realize by deploying the Dell | Cloudera Apache Hadoop Solution, accelerated by Intel.

Although the study was commissioned by Dell and Intel, I want to stress that neither Dell nor Intel was involved in the process. In fact, while we were highly confident in the results, we had no idea of what our recommended companies would actually say. The Forrester analysts met privately with representatives from four separate companies.

Forrester consolidated findings from those separate companies into a single composite organization. The results achieved by this composite organization are meant to provide a typical result based on a Dell | Cloudera Hadoop deployment.

The study identified three-year risk-adjusted results using the Dell | Cloudera Hadoop Solution:

  • ROI: 97%
  • Net present value (NPV) per node: $58,542
  • Payback: Six months
  • Revenue growth: 20% – 30%

While there is no guarantee as to where your results might be, this study demonstrates a reasonable expectation based on prior experiences. It summarizes the value that Dell, Cloudera and Intel deliver on top of Open Source Hadoop software. We believe that tested and validated reference architectures, built from high-performance and secure technologies, wrapped in solid data management, make for an easy sell to the c-suite.

Of course, you don’t have to stop at modeling other people’s results. You can have your own firsthand experiences with a proof-of-concept. You can experience this in any of 15 Dell Customer Solution Centers. This global network of Dell technical labs provides a proving ground for organizations that want to architect, validate and build solutions. When you work in one of these centers, you have access to Dell experts. Our mission with these labs is simple: let you spend more time driving than building the car. We help customers explore, test and prove what makes sense their business.

For a fuller look at Forrester’s findings, download the Total Economic Impact™ study. Or take a few minutes to watch the associated TEI video. Maybe get a quick summary of the story in our TEI infographic. These assets are designed to fast track your business case for big data.

If you have any immediate information requests or questions, you can email them to our big data team via

Anthony Dina is Director of Big Data in North America for Dell.

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