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Home » Articles » Understanding The Challenges of Using Data Warehouses

Understanding The Challenges of Using Data Warehouses

Article Posted On Date : Friday, February 5, 2010

Understanding The Challenges of Using Data Warehouses

While data warehouses can be greatly beneficial to the companies that use them, there are many challenges that a company will face in their implementation and utilization. Some experts have even said that data warehouses are one of most overrated tools in the computer industry.

Many companies decide to use data warehouses beause they simple think that it is the "next big thing," and they don't take the time to think about the requirements they will need to meet in order to use this tools.

Being able to afford a data warehouse is just one of the many requirements a company will want to look at when implementing them. Many of the companies that implement data warehouses are disappointed with its performance.

A large number of these companies fall victim to vendors that promise to help them easily implement and use the product. However, many of these vendors are more concerned with turning a profit than helping the company succeed. To face the challenge of implementing a data warehouse, it is first important for you to understand why they can be challenging. First, constructing a data warehouse is much different than constructing an OLTP system. Many companies comparedata warehouses to standard OLTP systems, and this is a grave mistake. Data warehouses are much more complex than OLTP systems. There are a large number of tools in the standard warehouse, and these tools are further broken down into many categories.

It is also important for companies to realize that data warehouses are not core business tools. What this means is that a data warehouse is much more vulernable to the politics that may occur within a company or organization. If the data warehouse does not have the support of the employees, it will fail. Many employees have a hard time usingdata warehouses because of their complexity, and the companies they work for will often make the situation worse by failing to educate them. It is also challenging for companies to keep theirdata warehouses in tune with their production units. To make matters worse, many of their developers are not trained in calibrating them.

It should be noted that data warehouse projects fail frequently. While they are great for the companies that properly implement them, they are disasters for companies who are not prepared. Much of the literature that is written ondata warehouses is to positive toward the topic, and they don't spend enough time talking about the negatives of using a data warehouses. The biggest mistake that a company can make is not properly analyzing a data warehouse project before paying for it. By not doing a detailed requirements analysis,a company sets themselves up for failure. They will waste time, money, and the careers of some of their employees may be ruined.

This article is not meant to scare a company away from implementing a data warehouse. However, a company must be aware of the pitfalls involved with using a data warehouse. Don't rely on the vendors to tell you about this, because they will be too busy trying to sell your companythe product. Unless they are a good company, your success implementation of the product is of little interest to them. If a company wants its workers to use the data warehouse, they must become familiar with fundamental SQL, since it plays an important role in the construction of manydata warehouses. If the user does not understand basic SQL, it will be difficult for them to use the product efficiently.

It is also important for the company to pay attention to the vendor who is selling them the product. Is the vendor reputable?

Do they have a history of helping companies successfully implement their data warehouses?

How long have they been in the business?

It is amazing to see so many companies fail at their data warehouse implementation because they were distracted by the bells and whistles of a product. It is best to avoid doing business with vendors that don't have a proven history of success in implementing a data warehouse. It is also important to make sure your employees accept and understand the use of the data warehouse.

They need to be given an elaborate education on using the program, and this should play an important role in the implementation of the data warehouse. 

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