One of the reasons that I left my old job to work with Rittman Mead Consulting was to get back to technology. Don’t get this wrong, I really did enjoy managing people and having responsibility for a BI practice, but that was at the expense of involvement in a lot of the delivery of systems; for every one day of project work, I tended to spend eight doing “other stuff”, and I was getting to miss the buzz of being at the sharp end of a project, well maybe not missing the 2:30am coding whilst eating a slice of pizza stuff (which is a young person’s game)
Recently, I have been set the challenge to grow the amount of data warehouse and data quality work I am involved in and perhaps at the same time help dispel the perception that Rittman Mead Consulting just do short engagements and training; in the three months or so I have been here I have spent just three days delivering training and 2.5 months on-site with a single customer developing a data warehouse, so that notion is a bit of a myth anyway. Maybe the new Rittman Mead web site will feature some of the longer term type of engagements we are involved in.
I suppose a good question to start with is “do people still develop data warehouses?” Mark brought up a similar idea the other week in his ‘future BI architecture’ piece which also attracted some good comments. Indirectly, I mentioned alternatives to DWs in my article on Real Time BI for the Evaluation Centre – I hope to either post the article here on the blog or perhaps on the Rittman Mead web site in the next few days. A lot of organisations have already invested in data warehouses, these will continue to need attention, either from the support perspective or for enhancement as new classes of information are added. Data warehouses still have a place in BI as way of facilitating the delivery of quality data to the reporting layer in an efficient way so I can’t quite see the death of the Data Warehouse just yet.