Too Many Systems, Not Enough Talk
Author: Ryan Newstead, Principal Consultant – Open Windows
Information systems drive organisations with the masses of data they collect, store and output. This data is invaluable to the running of organisations and in most cases critical to their success.
Operational staff in large organisations are often overwhelmed by the sheer number of information systems they are expected to interact with, populate and manage on a day-to-day basis. Whether it is financial transactions, human resource information, document management, or project/procurement/contract management; all business functions have dedicated systems that are implemented with the key organisational benefit of reporting.
Reporting and analysis of data and information from multiple systems is often achieved through the use of yet another system – the data warehouse. The ability to combine the information output of each system into reporting suites provides the relevance of the data to the organisation.
How does this benefit the users?
All of these systems can create duplicate processes, manual rationalisation of data, data entry errors, and competing sets of common information that should be the same.
To give users the benefits, whilst ensuring accurate data entry and maintenance – SYSTEM INTEGRATION is the key. Common data should be shared between all of the different information systems via integration, giving users the most valuable and efficient user experience possible through the user interfaces they use day-to-day, not just through reporting.
Although the cost of system integration may seem unnecessary to begin with, think of the wasteful cost of having a highly capable data warehouse in place that is full of inaccurate reporting data.
Productivity and efficiency from users through integrated systems drives an accurate and reliable data warehouse, ultimately leading to the powerful reporting output all organisations are striving for.