Collecting data and making it usable is like mass-energy in the universe; work can be converted from one kind to another, but it can be neither created nor destroyed. 1/
You can shift around the burden of work in data collection from one place to another—away from up-front business requirements toward managing TMS rules, or away from maintaining a data layer toward post-collection logic/transformation—but the work is always there. 2/
There is an optimal distribution of work within your organization to collect and process data, but it’s still work. Someone is going to have to do it. Anyone selling you a tag that reduces this work without compromising quality is hiding what you’ll have to do on the back end. 3/
I know what you’re thinking: “But I just dragged and dropped a tag and I got data.” Then, like converting mass to energy, you swapped data richness/accuracy/etc. for time. It may not seem that way if you don’t know what’s possible, but it’s true. 4/
And I know this cost is real because if I had a dollar for every company that has bought into this idea of simplicity at no cost and found out one, three, six, twelve, etc. months later what the actual cost is… I wouldn’t be wealthy, but it’s more than a handful of them. 5/
BTW it is totally possible to drive data management cost out of your business, but what that means—per the law of conservation—is that either data quality/utility decreases, or the cost transfers somewhere else and shows up as something else (hopefully in someone else's budget)
Data (good, useful data, at least) is complex and complicated, and the field of data engineering is still emerging precisely because doing this right isn't cheap

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