Building a Data Warehouse in an Agile Manner

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Abstract
Being agile—whether on a data warehousing project or a typical development project—is really all about focusing on the right things and doing them in the most efficient means possible.


What this is

A case study of how agile techniques were used to add a new data source to an existing warehouse in order to support operational reporting. This paper discusses specific things to consider when tackling a data warehouse project using an agile approach, in four categories:

  • Defining the Problem Domain and Solution
  • Project Team
  • Release and Iteration Planning
  • Engineering Practices

Why it's useful

Data warehousing, or Business Intelligence applications, are becoming increasingly important to organizations as they seek to be able to utilize all of the information generated by their business to make better decisions. The general consensus is that data warehouse development requires a great deal of design work up front, and could never be delivered in an agile manner. This paper contains some advice on how to counter the general consensus, based on experience with a real-world project.


About the Author
Kent J. McDonald has more than a decade of experience guiding successful projects and designing business solutions in a variety of industries, including financial services, health insurance, performance marketing, human services, non-profit, and automotive. His background includes delivering data-intensive and web-enabled application development projects that provide outstanding business value, and helping organizations find practical ways to deliver the right results. When he is not helping organizations get more done by doing less, Kent writes and speaks on leadership, business analysis, and agile approaches. Kent is currently Director of IT Content for ProjectConnections.com where he is developing and organizing practical resources for teams involved in Information technology projects and interested in agile approaches.


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