The growing importance of business intelligence and data analytics applications in driving business decision making has made data integration's vital role in the enterprise crystal clear. From gathering data, transforming it into useful information and delivering it to the business users or processes that need it, data integration routines provide the crucial link between a variety of source and target systems.
As the first article in this series examined, several types of packaged software have emerged to meet the challenges of data integration. The current generation of data integration tools consists of full-fledged suites that support extract, transform and load (ETL) processes, application integration, cloud-based and real-time integration, data virtualization, data cleansing and data profiling.
How can you determine if your organization should invest in a data integration tool? To help justify the purchase of data integration software, let's explore how other organizations are using these platforms to meet their needs.
(This is the second article in a four-part series on data integration platforms. The first article laid the groundwork by identifying the types of tools and how they are used. This article examines specific use cases for buying a data integration tool. Article No. 3 will help you determine which features are most important to your organization. The concluding article will examine the leading commercial data integration platforms, comparing and contrasting their features.)
(Learn more about data integration and all things BI in my Business Intelligence Guidebook - From Data Integration to Analytics. Chapter 11 is on data integration design and development and chapter 12 is on data integration processes. )