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When I was first exposed to the new wave of Real-Time Operational BI solutions coming online, my initial reaction was, "Oh man, here we go again! Fighting the BI vendors' 'sizzle sell' and the "EDW heresy' that comes along with them selling direct connects to the operational support systems and the propagation of independent Data Marts."
But, I owed it to myself to get a better appreciation for the solution. The Operational BI I'm referring to is the real-time connection to federated sources (Operational Support Systems) through web service agents and the direct updates of "twinkling" Operational Dashboard measures. The end-users have control over the setting of performance thresholds and alerting schemes, dynamically, as needed to quickly react to blips in the operational metrics. This is a nice fit for specialized applications such as a Command and Control Center.
What about the metrics that get accumulated throughout the day? Push & persist them to the Enterprise Data Warehouse. This provides a history of these R/T metrics enabling more strategic trending and data mining functions.
Operational BI has a home in the overall Enterprise Information Management architecture. But is your enterprise ready for r/t Operational BI? Is the business prepared to react and evolve in real-time mode in response to r/t changes? The technologies are ready to enable and the vendors are ready to sell.
It's a paradigm shift. But hey every paradigm needs a nudge once in awhile!
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