Is your data hot, warm, cold or frozen?

Data is alive! That is something we all agree on. Data is important to all of us. But does all the data stay important during time? Well that is a different story to be honest. Some of the data will lose value when time passes by. The key element in this case is to identify the data that still holds value. And what kind of value it this? Do you need it on daily bases? Or does legislation demands that you preserve this data. What data temperature does it have and is of great importance for you?

Data Temperature Measurement Model

In the model beneath you can find the data temperature measurement model. Data is often in one of these phases. This model is developed by a professor who works close with SAP in order to manage data in the most sustainable way regarding all the legislation such as GDPR

This research from SAP gives an excellent view about the phases data can be in. I took the liberty to adjust the model and complete it with a 4th component. Let us take a look at the different phases of data temperature.

Hot Data

Hot data is the most active data you have. This data is often just entered in to the system and needed for different purposes such as reporting about recent activities. These transactions are the basic metrics for reports and the day to day activities.

Warm Data

The warm data is data with some activities however not really hot. It is important to complete reports and give insights in comparisons in monthly or quarterly activities.

Cold Data

Cold data can be seen as data that already a closure and is archived. There may be some reporting components active but only once in a while used to create reports for example over many years or historical trends.

Frozen Data

The frozen data is only there because of the legislation and the demands considering this legislation. For example the obligated retention times for invoices and details about purchases. Only the institutions with affiliated with tax purposes are interested in this kind of data.

All the definitions are subject to opinions and daily operations of your company. But be aware of the fact that is almost impossible to keep all your data active in operations systems. The performance can be influenced in the wrong way. This is something you do not want and it is not necessary at all. It is manageable for your company so try to manage it in the best way. Manage your data and your data temperature!