My first exposure to data warehousing was through Jet Global (now known as Insight Software). At the time, I was working at a mid-sized company that experienced chronic headaches when it came to reporting. Reports seemed to take forever to build and existed largely as standalone Excel spreadsheets connecting to the transactional databases.
I realized that we already owned the Jet Global reporting software package that had been purchased for financial reporting. Here is where I learned the best feature of the Jet Global data warehouse system: Jet Global is built to integrate with 100+ ERP and EPM systems out-of-the-box.
My company used Microsoft GP, and upon opening the Jet Global data warehousing software for the first time, I found that the software immediately was able to build data cubes for Purchasing, Sales, Finance, Inventory and more because it was familiar with the Microsoft GP structure.
This completely eliminated the need to tediously build a data warehouse from scratch for the most common data needs. As a beginner to data warehousing, it was immeasurably valuable to have this data warehouse built out that covered 95% of the business needs. I was able to learn from the structure and work to implement some of our customized data objects in Microsoft GP into the data warehouse.
Since learning more about data warehousing, I have worked with IBM Cognos Framework Manager as well. I have found that this is an easier platform to use as an intermediate data warehouse developer. The diagram visualizations aid in the development of different data models and are superior to those in Jet Global.
In my experience, it is easier for developers to work out of the IBM Cognos tools to build data models. But the huge win for the Jet Global (Insight Software) data warehouse package is the ease with which an out-of-the-box data warehouse can be built for a company’s ERP system. It requires very little support from developers before being ready for actual reporting use.