It’s universally known that data is everything to an organization. And, for this reason, it is essential to know how to use it right. We have a database management system that helps us to define these data in the database. Additionally, it lets users manipulate, retrieve, and manage data. Previously, we had a traditional file management system. The problem with this system was that it stored information and data, but did not define it. This sets DBMS apart from file-based systems and makes it a favorable choice for organizations. It includes metadata, so it is easier to understand the relationship between data in the database. The self-describing nature of DBMS makes it easier for businesses to take decisions. We saw a glimpse of what DBMS is all about. Now, let’s look at the advantages it has to offer and its drawbacks.
Advantages of DBMS
We can handle data very well using DBMS. Organizations use this system to synchronize their data and keep track of activities. Here are some advantages provided by DBMS.
1. Provides better access
The traditional file-based system included a struggle to get access to the required data, which was very time-consuming. At the other end of the spectrum, we have DBMS, which has made quick access a reality. Now, you no longer have to struggle to find the right data. You can simply use queries and in no time you will have requested data, ready for you to make decisions using them. It provides access to accurate data and helps users to go through it. So that they can use it to respond to dynamic environments.
2. Provides improved security
We saw how DBMS can be beneficial to the organization, which is why they invest a lot in it. And, it comes naturally that a system with enormous benefits will attract more users. The increasing number of users impacts security. DBMS takes care of security aspects in the form of data privacy and security policies. The data in the database is restricted to specific users, and only the concerned user should have access to those data. In these cases, username and password are used to authenticate the identity of the users and give them access accordingly.
3. Improves data consistency
The data keeps on updating, and we must make sure that it is not repeated in the database. One of the drawbacks of the traditional file-based system was that there was data redundancy. The DBMS was introduced with the goal of minimizing data inconsistency. Additionally, when data is updated in one location, it is updated in the overall system, so that data remains consistent. The DBMS improves data consistency, making it possible for organizations to use these data to make accurate decisions.
4. Helps in decision-making
We saw data redundancy is minimized using the DBMS, and the available data is of better quality. Basically, it provides a framework where organizations can enhance the quality of their data by improving and managing access. It is vital for the growth of the business to keep making profitable decisions, and the DBMS helps them to achieve this goal. Using quality data is a sure way for making better decisions.
5. Increases users productivity
Earlier, more manual work was involved in the traditional file-based systems. And, using DBMS, we have eliminated most of them. There is no need to update each file, instead, we can make changes in one location, and DBMS ensures that changes are updated throughout the system. The direct benefit of this feature is that it saves time and effort, which increases the productivity of the end-users. In simple words, it provides users all the tools that they need to get their work done quickly and easily.
Disadvantages of DBMS
As you all know, everything comes with a cost, and so is the DBMS. We do get a lot of advantages from using DBMS, but there are downsides to it. Let’s take a look at a few of its disadvantages.
1. Incurs massive costs
The DBMS not only includes huge software and hardware costs but also comes with high maintenance and training costs. If you think the organization just has to invest in its setup, then you need to reconsider. If you use DBMS, you know that you need a high-speed processor. Furthermore, the memory size should be good enough to use the database on the DBMS. Since there are security threats, skilled technical professionals are brought on board to maintain the DBMS. And, the pay for the database administrator position is quite high.
2. Vast data size
DBMS allows its users to collect more and more data, and maintain them in the database to run businesses. In the initial phase, the data size is comparatively small, but as time passes by, the amount of stored data increases. The vast data size creates many problems as it impacts the performance of the system. The users can expect a change in the performance of the system over time with the increase in the data size.
3. Centralized system
Having a decentralized system has its own perks, but unfortunately, we do not get this feature in DBMS. The biggest disadvantage of a centralized system is that if it fails, the entire system collapses. In the DBMS context, if there are database failures, the entire data in the system is at risk of loss. Even though DBMS helps to manage all the data in one system, the centralization feature can create havoc in incidents of database failures.
4. Complex system
DBMS is a complex system where you need technical skills to operate. For non-technical users, the system is quite complex as they lack the required skills to perform database operations. Besides complexity, it is suggested not to take risks with databases if you do not possess the required skills as it is the backbone of the organization, and can cause potential problems.
5. Requires training
Considering the complexity of DBMS, it is a necessity to train the staff working with databases. They need to be trained so that they can develop the skills essential to manage and maintain the database. Staff with no prior training shouldn’t work with databases, as they might end up performing incorrect operations that will put the organization’s data at risk. Apart from this, the other drawback is that the training costs can be quite expensive.