Friday, May 30, 2008

Ready for Operational Business Intelligence? A Good Read…

Operational reporting isn't new; I remember slogging through reams of mainframe-generated reports in my very first job out of college, many years ago. So why is operational Business Intelligence (BI) garnering so much headline real estate these days?

Expanding beyond traditional, strategic business intelligence, operational BI provides an unprecedented level of business insight to support the management of daily operations. And as we look at ways to extend our existing investments in analytic applications, this seems a natural evolution. But introducing operational BI into your organization comes at a cost. The impact on your data warehouse environment can be enormously disruptive if not approached with the understanding that this is a broad-scale project that will have significant impact (and benefits to be realized) across the organization.

Claudia Imhoff, recognized thought leader and expert on business intelligence, has published a new white paper on The Ever-Evolving Data Warehouse: Dealing with Changes and Pressures for BI Today that discusses the impacts of operational BI on the data warehouse environment. Some of her key takeaways regarding the impacts to data warehouse include:
  • Scalability
  • Performance
  • Continuous availability
  • Ability to combine different sources of data
While not exactly summertime holiday light reading, her white paper focuses on the impacts to the data warehouse and provides great food for thought for those of you who are considering or beginning an operational BI project. The paper digs into issues beyond the `headline-hype' of operational BI; in fact, the considerations that she discusses are applicable beyond operations and are equally appropriate for any project aimed at extending the foundation laid with your existing BI systems.