IT managers should not plan to unearth ?golden nuggets? of information when implementing a data warehouse, but should go for a standard reporting system that can undertake the structured queries wanted by the majority of users.
They should also bear in mind that the most important issues when building a data warehouse are not technological, but organisational and cultural, according to Jonathan Steel, managing director of research firm, the Bathwick Group, speaking at the Data Warehousing show held in Olympia, London today.
?Users need to build a data warehouse that matches the company?s needs and its business infrastructure. There is a fundamental need to understand the business and user requirements, so IT needs to talk to those involved. Data warehousing is not a product that you buy off-the-shelf, but a concept and set of approaches?, he said.
?Most managers will have most of their queries answered by a structured reporting system, but more than half of those implementing data warehouses believe users need to do ad hoc urgent queries to find out whatever they want. But, you can?t provide what someone thinks they might fancy. If you try to deliver everything someone may want, you will fail,? he continued.
Users also needed to think globally and act locally if they are to succeed in their implementations.
Although it was usually better to start with a small system that involved less risk, if IT managers did not think of the needs of the business, now and in the future, in the broadest possible sense, they would experience growing pains as they started trying to scale the system up.
As a result, as more users wanted to use the system, it was likely to run out of steam and could even end up having to be canned.
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