All business managers will tell you that they have to look at data before deciding on the way forward. You want to procure a new set of equipment for your upcoming branch? You will need to look at the data sent in from your suppliers and compare with data from the past concerning the same equipment. It is important to carry out the comparison before making the decision. It helps to choose exactly that which is best for your business. Data is a very crucial asset that few businesses are willing to give up. However, comparing the data and analyzing it effectively is often a problem for many.
Enter data integration
Data integration is one of the major challenges that businesses across the globe suffer from. It is quite hard to integrate data from different sources and at the same time, it is hard to store the data in the same place. Well, generally it depends on who is doing the work. Some companies offer fantastic data IT solutions to address the specific needs of a business. The cost of these services tends to be ridiculously high but it will be worth your while.
How to do proper integration
Before discussing how data is integrated, it is probably wise to explain what exactly this process is. At the most basic level, integration of data is combination of information from disparate source systems to provide unified view of the data. It is a process which is very common when merging the systems of two different companies or when a business is consolidating its applications to provide a singular view of the data assets of the company.
In order to integrate data effectively, creation of a data warehouse is necessary. This is a large storage facility packed with data from all parts of the business- in layman’s terms. The architecture of the warehouse will affect the quality of data storage, integration and management. This is why it is very important to seek out professionals in IT for data to help in the planning. As above mentioned, the cost of creating a data warehouse can be ridiculously high. Therefore, you cannot afford to have it done incorrectly. Inappropriate construction could lead to untold losses.
Challenges that have to be handled
There are two main challenges faced when trying to integrate data:
- Incompatibility of the source systems
Some source systems are different but very compatible. Integrating data from disparate and incompatible sources is a major challenge that can stall the whole process if not addressed completely. This is why an expert in IT is very important.
- The entirety of the data integration process
The whole process of implementing a data integration process is lengthy and very complex. The source systems need analysis as will the requirements of the business. Non functional requirements of the system also need to be addressed. This very technical process needs lots of planning.