BI Implementation Enabler: Agile Framework for Data Warehousing – Part 1

Posted by Karthikeyan Sankaran
Comments (1)
November 29th, 2007

As part of the Business Intelligence Utopia series, I am going to focus on the implementation enablers in the next few posts. The first implementation enabler is: Agile Framework for Managing Business Intelligence systems

BI systems are complex to manage due to the following reasons:

  • Keeps Evolving over time – Enterprise DW can never be completely built
  • BI drives business decisions – Needs “Total Alignment” with corporate vision
  • Power of BI applications increases exponentially as the number of information consumers increases
  • Data Warehouses need to be measured & calibrated against pre-set goals
  • Development & Support has to be managed concurrently

Standard process methodologies like the Waterfall model, Spiral & Iterative models are not suitable for managing BI systems. One methodology I have seen work very well, having used it in multiple projects at Hexaware, is the “Agile Methodology”. The philosophy of the Agile framework fits in very nicely to alleviate some of the complex issues in managing BI systems.

Agile Methodology – Definition

Agile development is a software development approach that “cycles” through the development phases, from gathering requirements to delivering functionality into a working release.

Basic Tenets:

  • Shared Vision and Small Teams working on specific functionality
  • Frequent Releases that make business sense
  • Relentlessly manage scope – Managing the scope-time-resources triad effectively
  • Creating a Multi-Release Framework with master plan and supporting architecture
  • Accommodate changes “gracefully”

BI practitioners would appreciate the fact that the basic tenets do provide solutions to some of the critical pain areas when it comes to managing enterprise BI systems.

The ultimate goal of any DW/BI project is to roll out new business functionality on a regular and rapid basis with a high degree of conformance to what is already there –> à Fits in well with the “Agile” philosophy

The next few posts will illustrate the practical application of the Agile Framework to Business Intelligence systems.

BI Information Nugget – One of the recent websites that I really liked is: This is a BI blog aggregation site that has blogs written by seasoned BI practitioners. Happy reading!

Comments (1)

BI guy - November 30th, 2007

This is a really interesting article which describes very well the general trend in the BI application creation road.

Comments are closed.