Data processing: what it is and how it works
Business USA

Data processing: what it is and how it works

Abraão Almeida
Abraão Almeida

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You've certainly heard the term “data processing”, but do you know exactly what it is and how it's done?

In fact, we can say that the entire area of ​​information technology depends on data processing.

All data that travels on the internet, social networks and logical networks of your company must be processed so that people have access to the information.

This processing is done on a daily basis, often so automatically that there is no thought to improve its efficiency.

So, the big question is not to implement data processing in your company. Every company, in order to exist, already processes data.

The question is to understand the strategic importance of this process and organize it as efficiently as possible for your business.

In the following topics, you will understand what data processing consists of, how it works in practice, what types of data processing are, and how it can help your business grow.

What is data processing?

Data processing can be thought of as collecting, ordering and organizing information according to a logical and appropriate arrangement for interpretation.

This information makes up what are called databases. Within a company, they are generated in droves from interactions with employees, suppliers and customers.

But, without processing, this information is stored without being able to be used in an intelligible way.

When a user accesses a database and gets results for their search, it is data processing that is providing them with the results they need.

The information extracted as a result of a search is the result of data processing.

That's why we say that information technology has the focus of its existence centered on data processing.

What are the types of data processing?

There are four types of data processing. Let's talk about each of them next.

Batch Processing

It is the processing that transmits data directly to the company's central server, dividing them into batches and scheduling pre-programmed times for processing.

A good example is the backup of organizational data, which usually takes place after the close of work.

Online processing

This type of processing is done at the same time as the data is registered.

The most remembered examples are some banking transactions, such as credit card purchases that are updated immediately on the bank's customer statement.

Offline Processing

In this case, there is no direct connection between the terminal receiving the data and the server.

The data is stored on a temporary device that has no internet connection. Only after a while are they taken to the database.

real-time processing

The clearest example of real-time processing is GPS, as it is a type of process whose records are made immediately and sequentially.

Thus, when information has just been processed, a mechanism is already activated to process a new record.

That's what happens with GPS: it processes information along the path that the vehicle travels and releases guidance.

How does data processing work in practice?

Data processing is classified as mechanized when it is done with the aid of computers or other devices.

This idea of ​​mechanization exists because the technological equipment was not always available to companies for the organization and availability of data.

It is currently unfeasible to give up the help of machines, given the exorbitant amount of data generated daily.

So, in practice, data processing is done in the following way: first the data is collected through hardware.

Then the data is written and sent to that hardware's processor. From then on, they will be received by software that will analyze and organize them.

With the processed data, it is possible to output information, which generate knowledge to be used by the person or company.

As every company already does, efficiently or not, data processing, the focus, when thinking about this process, should be improving the quality of the information obtained.

There are five requirements that information must meet to be considered trustworthy: integrity, confidentiality, reliability, irrefutability and availability.

During the analysis and organization of the data, it is possible to block inconsistent information, avoiding the provision of false or erroneous information after searches carried out in the databases.

This separation of inconsistent data is what allows the fulfillment of the five requirements of reliable information.

We can. therefore, think about dividing data processing into several steps, the main ones being:

  • Collect
  • Storage
  • Analyze;
  • Organization;
  • Treatment;
  • Grouping;
  • Exit.

The effective grouping of information can show trends and provide the monitoring of performance indicators, so important in business management.

Data processing and business management

Of course, you already know that the data you have is an important asset for your company.

Using data effectively, it is possible to optimize business management, create better relationships with customers, improve the solutions offered and make the company grow, among many other possibilities.

That's why efficient data processing must be prioritized in your information technology industry.

When authoritative information is organized and sorted, many facts come to light and many trends become evident.

By observing these factors and trends, managers are able to identify opportunities in their industry and gain insights to improve the productivity of their employees.

Quality data processing also provides information that allows the identification of relevant performance indicators and their monitoring.

This monitoring may support strategic decisions to be taken by managers in order to promote business growth.

Data processing and LGPD

The General Data Protection Law establishes some rules that must be followed when processing personal data.

First, to use any personal data, the company must obtain authorization from the data subject and clearly inform him of the purpose of such use.

There are some situations in which the consent of the data holder may be waived:

  • To fulfill legal obligation;
  • To prepare studies through research bodies;
  • To defend some right in court proceedings;
  • To preserve life;
  • To avoid fraud;
  • When the procedure is performed by health professionals;
  • To meet the legitimate interests of the company or third parties without harming the holder's rights;
  • To protect credit.

The three principles of personal data processing are transparency, necessity and security.

This means that:

  • The holders of personal data must be informed about the use of this information;
  • The purpose for which the data is being used must be made explicit;
  • Only the data that is really necessary can be used (no more holding the information to use it only when you find a usefulness or have a new idea);
  • The company must guarantee the security of the storage and treatment of these data (no leaks that expose the data subject to any problem).

It is noticeable that companies need to undergo some adaptations in their data processing to meet the requirements of the LGPD.

Therefore, it is highly recommended to appoint a professional to provide adjustments and monitor the organization's compliance with the LGPD, as well as guide the teams that deal with personal data.

One of the first tasks of this professional will be to create a means for obtaining the consent of the holders of personal data.

Consent can be obtained through a physical or electronic form that must be signed by the data holder.

It is also very important that the company acquires tools and software that guarantee the security of the personal data under its supervision.

And speaking of security, of course it depends on a good data storage strategy.

Now that you have the most important information about data processing, it's important to take care of storage as well. Read our article on this subject.

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