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Deep Dive into Data with Keith Davies, CTO

By Ally Yanco

Keith Davies joined AGDATA in 2018 and serves as our Chief Technology Officer. With over 20 years of experience, Keith currently heads up our engineering and tech services departments, but is also an innovative leader in the development of data management at AGDATA. We sat down with Keith to dive deeper into his knowledge of the technical side of data.

Keith Davies

Q: Tell us a little bit about yourself and what you’ve done in your career that has led you to AGDATA.

A: Before coming to AGDATA, I was one of the CTOs at General Electric. At GE, we were very focused on being able to use data to improve the operations of our customers’ business.  Whether that was reducing waste on a manufacturing line or predicting when assets like jet engines or gas turbines would fail, data drove all of our decisions.

At AGDATA, the verticals in which we operate are very different than GE’s, however, the premise of using data to improve the operations of our customers’ business is still very much the same.

The technologies behind data ingestion, data cleansing, data storage, and data science are all imperative for everything we do.  At AGDATA, we are using the latest technologies to analyze data and obtain insights that enable our customers to improve the experience they provide to their customers.

 

Q: What types of projects do you work on for AGDATA?

A: One of the things I work on is how we can differentiate our offerings and provide greater value to our customers through the use of technology.  While technology evolution is incorporated into our product roadmaps, another way we’re bringing this to life is through newly created Innovation Lab.

This team, staffed with some of our top engineers and run by a former start-up co-founder, uses an entrepreneurial ‘fail, fast, forward’ approach to quickly test new innovative solutions with our customers.

I’m also focused on continuing to improve how we build software.  Whether that’s utilizing our microservice-based Enterprise Architecture or ensuring quality through our DevOps pipelines, we follow a craftsmanship model that’s part of our DNA.

 

Q: What trends do you see coming as it relates to data management, technology and integration?

A: While the cloud is certainly not a new trend, it will play an even greater role going forward by further enabling businesses to provide value for their customers.  Machine learning, image recognition / processing, and data science are just three of the capabilities we’re utilizing in the cloud.

Capabilities like these allow businesses to differentiate, but they do nothing if they’re not integrated with other relevant data.  Our ability to master data through cloud-based master data management and store it in cloud-based data warehouses is critical.

Finally, the ability to provide this information as Data as a Service through reliable, redundant APIs which give customers the information they need, when they need it.  This turns information into actionable insights which in turn solves real business problems.

 

Q: Can you talk about the advancements AGDATA has made in data management and technology?

A: Over time, the volume of data we ingest along with the number of errors in that data has continued to expand.  To meet this demand, we have created an industry-leading cloud-based, configurable data platform that utilizes the technologies mentioned above.

However, we also realize that technology will continue to evolve.  Therefore, we architected this data platform as a set of stand-alone, decoupled services.  This allows us to ‘swap out’ technologies, like our business rules engine, when better ones become available.

This approach not only allows us to operate the best data platform in the industry today, but ensures we continue to evolve as new technology becomes available.  This will allow us to continue scaling our platform as the needs of our customers expand.

 

Q: What do you think sets AGDATA apart?

A: Our people, processes, and advanced technologies working together to solve problems is what truly sets us apart.  We hire really exceptionally innovative people, provide them with the latest technologies, and give them a work environment where they have the freedom and flexibility to truly create.

 


 

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