The Business Intelligence (BI) and Analytics technologies are advancing at a dizzying pace. "Big Data," "Self Service BI," and "Advanced Analytics" are key trends in this space, pushing the envelope on exponential increases in data volumes, as well as growing technologies available to end users for more advanced analysis and visualization. Capabilities in turning data into actionable information have become an essential part of running large organizations and constitute competitive advantage even in higher education.
Here at UMass we are well positioned to roll out solutions across many of the key competency areas of BI and Analytics. These will be done both as shared services for the entire system as well as on individual campuses. At UMass, we have a solid foundation in an Enterprise Data Warehouse and will continue to support this system. However, we must look to the future - accommodating market forces - and start putting in place the pieces of architecture, technology, and organization to best support our users going forward.
Data scientists and industry experts agree: the Enterprise Data Warehouse (EDW) is here to stay and will play a pivotal role in the future of BI and Analytics landscape. The Summit EDW is part of the larger Summit program where data has been transformed to make it easier for analysis. A Logical layer translates the data into easy to use and stable business language (Refer to Gartner’s Logical Data Warehouse).
But the EDW is only one piece of the larger Summit ecosystem. Work is already under way to provide easier access to large amounts of raw data through the Summit data lake, enable easier central access to data from Tableau, introduce analytics engines and data mart, and support cloud vendors of analytics content.
Main Features of Summit
- Transform data from many different sources
- Prepare data for analysis and reporting
- Contains several data marts with concentrations on different subject areas such as Student, HR, Finance, and others
- Includes a number of tools for analysis: direct access for analytics mart, OBIEE, Tableau and other tools specific to each campus
- Works as a data hub where transformed data can be extracted for use in others systems such as cloud solutions including CRM/Salesforce – with plans to include raw data access in the future