Data mart consolidation

How many data warehouses/marts are needed in an organization to accomplish objectives?

There is a movement afoot within data warehousing relating to answering the question of how many data warehouses/marts...

are needed in an organization to accomplish objectives. Several organizations are responding that the fewer, the better, and are consolidating marts and warehouses in a process known as Data Mart Consolidation (DMC).

Data warehousing is a process, not a project and a journey rather than a destination. This applies to DMC as well. There are several forms that DMC can take on including merging data marts into a new warehouse, picking an existing warehouse/mart and merging other warehouse/marts into it and moving analytical function off other databases onto a data warehouse. The movements can take on the form of moving the existing designs and re-routing ETL into the consolidated warehouse or consolidating designs as well as the platform.

There may have been few external data points for companies to rely on to date as they did their DMC, but that is changing.

Approaches and steps to DMC as well as maturity levels with DMC are:

  • Rehosting -- The process of picking up database designs and ETL "lock, stock and barrel" and moving it to a different platform either as an effort to gain performance or cost advantages. Often the rehosting will be done onto a platform with existing data constructs, thereby expanding the utility of the platform.
  • Re-architecting -- The process of merging database designs and therefore the data acquisition strategy for the data as well. Re-architecting may involve picking the best model components from various models and/or it may involve more zero-based approaches that use requirements as the basis for the new model.

For more information, check out SearchCRM's Best Web Links on Data Warehousing.

This was first published in August 2002

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