IBM Data Management Magazine - Change, Challenge and the Data Warehouse


(19-Oct-09) Mike Randolph, vice president and senior technology manager for Bank of America, has seen data warehouse trends come and go. "Change has been constant over the years," says Randolph, who supervises a 22-node, IBM DB2-driven warehouse that supports the bank's credit card operations. "You either learn to adapt to the changes or get swallowed up by them."

These days, five major trends-exploding data growth; end-user demands for greater data analysis, granularity, and speed; requester and source proliferation; the growing popularity of prefabricated appliances/data models; and the challenge of working with unstructured data-are reshaping the data warehouse landscape, challenging adopters across all industries. But Randolph isn't shrinking from the task. "You need to face change head on with the knowledge that any temporary disruptions created will be more than compensated for by better performance and the addition of new capabilities," he says.

For data warehouse managers like Randolph who are willing to embrace emerging trends, change and challenge present an opportunity to excel, says Warren Thornthwaite, a consultant with The Kimball Group, a data warehousing education and advisory organization. "Whether you're dealing with things like growing data volume and the need for deeper data analysis or wondering how to handle unstructured data, you need to turn change into an opportunity," he explains.

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