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In determining whether or not a data warehouse (DW) is right for your organization, consider the following factors and best practices:
- Business and IT executive support is critical for the political and financial support of a DW program.
- Target a specific end-user group and set of business processes (i.e. a business or functional unit) that can serve as a pilot group. Get early buy-in.
- The lack of an effective communication plan is the most common explanation for misguided expectations around DW program benefits.
- Educate yourself about the requisite job functions for DW implementation, ongoing support, and maintenance.
- Do not underestimate the importance of data integration to DW success. Systems integrators and consultants may be able to help with the initial phase of the DW program, but you will need to bring those skills in-house.
If your organization is well positioned on the preceeding points, moving ahead with the DW implementation project is a prudent course of action. The project has the potential to create real value for your business. However, if your organization does not meet the readiness criteria, consider putting the project off until a more suitable atmosphere is cultivated.
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