The Good News and Bad News About Data Usage

If you’re a BI leader, you may be faced with a good news/bad news situation regarding data usage. The good news is that more and more people in your organization want to use data to make decisions and discover insights. But, this huge increase in data usage can also be bad news – an overwhelming number of requests for more dashboards, more flexibility, and, in particular, more data.

In addition to this upsurge in data usage, many BI leaders are faced with additional challenges due to some fairly significant shifts within the data ecosystem, including the rise of cloud data warehouses, more data regulations and increasingly diverse data sources.

Bad News – Qlik Connectors May No longer Be Sufficient

Until recently, the only tool needed to provide QlikView and Qlik Sense customers with data was Qlik Connectors. They work with a wide variety of sources and require minimal setup time. But, given this rising demand for data, as well as changes in the data landscape, Qlik Connectors may no longer be enough. Perhaps you have one of these challenges:

  • Setting up access to a legacy data source requires too much time and money.
  • The only way for analytic power users to get a new dataset is to submit a request to the BI team or IT and then wait.
  • Users don’t trust certain datasets because they’ve seen inconsistencies or can’t determine where the data originally comes from.

If any of this sounds familiar, Qlik may be able to help.

If you’ve been following Qlik over the past few years, you’ve probably heard that we’ve expanded our portfolio upstream within the data supply chain.We now offer both data analytics AND data integration solutions. This means we can provide our analytics customers with the best of both worlds.

Good News – Qlik Can help

Quickly enable access to legacy data by utilizing a cloud data repository

Does it cost too much to provide your Qlik analytic users with data from an old, legacy system, a mainframe or a custom-developed repository? Are you prohibited from getting data directly from a core business system?

Qlik can offer an alternative solution – your analytic users query an accessible cloud data warehouse, such as Snowflake or an Amazon Relational Database Service, which contains the up-to-date legacy data. Qlik Data Integration solutions make it easy to model and create the cloud data warehouse, as well as automatically populate it. We then continuously monitor the original data source for any changes. If something happens, Qlik uses Change Data Capture technology to immediately reflect this change in the new data source. So, by simply giving your analytics users access to a cloud data warehouse, they can utilize data from a variety of hard-to-access data sources.

Provide power users with the ability to find and select new datasets

Most analytic users are content with using existing dashboards and apps, but your power users want more. They want to be able to add new data to an existing app or a totally new app. And, they want the data now! But, many have no choice but to submit a request for new data and then wait. And wait. And wait…

Instead, Qlik can make data from across the enterprise available in one secure, self-service catalog. Your power users can then go and look for new data whenever they want to. Just like an online store, they add their selections to a cart and then send the data to not only Qlik Sense, but optionally other BI tools like Tableau or PowerBI.

Increase data confidence

If you found discrepancies within a dataset, would you use the data again? If you can’t understand where the data came from, how much would you trust it? Your analytic users are no different. If they lack confidence in the data, they aren’t going to use it much.

Sometimes, data inconsistencies are accidentally caused by the many manual steps or custom coding that’s required to make data analytics-ready. Sometimes, it’s because the data wasn’t adequately profiled or quality checked. Or, it could be that the tools used to prepare the data simply don’t have the capabilities to record data lineage.

But users of Qlik’s Data Integration solutions work with a configuration tool to define how the data will be moved and transformed, thus documenting the process. Underlying instructions to perform related tasks, such as ETL commands, are automatically generated; thus, the process is error free. And, the instructions are run automatically, ensuring the process is repeatable. Qlik also automatically profiles the data and records its lineage as the data progresses from a “raw,” original state to a Qlik app. Taken together, Qlik’s ability to improve the quality of the data means that more users will trust the data

Customers like Vancouver International Airport, Charter Communications and Vanguard have already seen data analytic benefits by using Qlik to help them solve their data integration challenges. If you want to learn more about how Qlik can help, check out our eBook: "Optimizing BI for a Changing Data Landscape: Qlik Data Integration for Modern Analytics.”

Handling #data usage upsurges: @Qlik can help users "quickly enable access to legacy data by utilizing a cloud data repository [...][,] provide power users w/ the ability to find & select new datasets & increase data confidence," writes @michaeldistler


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