Chapter 5 Foundations of Business Intelligence: Database and Information Management

Student Objectives
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Describe how a relational database organizes data and compare its approach to an objectoriented database. Identify and describe the principles of a database management system. Evaluate tools and technologies for providing information from databases to improve business performance and decision making. Assess the role of information policy and data administration in the management of organizational data resources. Assess the importance of data quality assurance for the business.

Chapter Outline
5.1 The Database Approach to Data Management Entities and Attributes Organizing Data in a Relational Database Establishing Relationships Database Management System Operations of a Relational DBMS Capabilities of Database Management Systems Object-Oriented Databases Using Databases to Improve Business Performance and Decision Making Data Warehouses What is a Data Warehouse? Data Marts Business Intelligence, Multidimensional Data Analysis, and Data Mining Data Mining Databases and the Web Managing Data Resources Establishing an Information Policy Ensuring Data Quality
Hands-On MIS

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5.5

Key Terms
The following alphabetical list identifies the key terms discussed in this chapter. The page number for each key term is provided.

174 Primary key. you can demonstrate several of the concepts presented in this section. 180 Data definition language. 161 Normalization.1. 161 Teaching Suggestions The essential message of this chapter is the statement that “Organizations need to manage their data assets very carefully to make sure that the data are easily accessed and used by managers and employees across the organization. 170 Database. 162 Field. If you have access to a relational DBMS during class time. How businesses store. and the elements of SQL. 160 Entity-relationship diagram.” Data have now become central and even vital to an organization’s survival. 168 Tuples. “The Database Approach to Data Management” This section introduces students to file organization terms and concepts. Companies need to manage their data to help them reduce costs. . 176 Entity. 168 Data mart. boost profitability. 171 Data administration. 163 Relational database. 163 Object-oriented DBMS. improve operational efficiency and decision making. in order to stress the importance of data and database systems for success in business. needs to manage data and information as an important resource. 162 Information policy. 160 Structured Query Language (SQL). 169 Object-relational DBMS. 179 Data cleansing. 165 Database server. 166 Data manipulation language. What’s interesting and intriguing about the opening vignette is how it points out that every organization. and manage their data has a tremendous impact on organizational effectiveness. 180 Data warehouse. and most of all. You can illustrate these comments by referencing the opening case. 161 Foreign key. Section 5. 161 Records. The database management system is comprised of three components: important database terminology. 161 Referential integrity. 172 Predictive analysis. 170 Data mining. 173 Data quality audit. types of databases.Attributes. 166 Data dictionary. even something as non-traditional as NASCAR. 159 Database administration. 179 Database management system (DBMS). organize. 169 Online analytical processing (OLAP). 178 Key field. You could substitute almost any other company for NASCAR and the story would be the same. 160 Business intelligence (BI). “NASCAR Races to Manage Its Data”.

while physical design shows how the database is arranged on direct access storage devices. Have your students prepare a logical design for the enrollment process. People who collect and analyze the DNA samples can make mistakes and improperly identify an innocent person as a criminal. but it will help them see and understand the logical design process. The database provides a fast. Help your students see how a logical design allows them to analyze and understand the data from a business perspective. Law enforcement agencies around the world can access the databases created by the states and linked through the FBI’s CODIS system. business intelligence.3. as well as normalize the data. but many students will need and want to know the business uses and business values. If you have time and as a class activity. data warehouses and data marts are important to many people. multidimensional data analysis. and data mining. The ability to share the data saves money and time. students will probably use some or all of these in their jobs. Keep in mind as you teach this chapter that managing data resources can be very technical. Doing it in a way that will enable your students to contribute to the success of their organization is the reason why most students are in this course. partly because they are critical for those who want to use data mining. At this point. Interactive Session: Organizations: DNA Databases: Crime Fighting Weapon or Threat to Privacy? Case Study Questions: 1. Regardless of their career choice. effectively managing data is the goal. Your students will need guidance from you to complete this activity. “Using Databases to Improve Business Performance and Decision Making” This section focuses on how data technologies are actually used: data warehouses. . For example. ask your students to prepare an entity-relationship diagram. What are the benefits of DNA Databases? DNA databases provide a centralized.2. which in turn has many uses in management analysis and business decisions. Innocent people could be wrongly convicted of crimes they didn’t commit. “Database Management System” Database design and management requirements for database systems are introduced. you can use the enrollment process at your university as an example. data marts. Sharing the data ensures a wider availability of the collected data. In the end.Section 5. digitized collection of one-of-a-kind data to prove the guilt or innocence of suspected criminals. Section 5. economical method of comparing evidence at crime scenes with DNA profiles to help apprehend those suspected of committing crimes. What problems do DNA databases pose? The DNA databases pose privacy risks to the innocent if the databases contain data on people who are not convicted criminals. 2.

Including everyone’s DNA assumes that everyone may at some point commit a crime.fbi.3. and enables the laboratories participating in the program to exchange and compare NDA profiles on . and LDIS (Local DNA Index System). Who should be included in a national DNA databases? Should it be limited to convicted felons? Explain your answer.htm ) 1. On the other hand. Just because a family member commits a crime. The FBI Laboratory’s CODIS project began as a pilot software project in 1990 serving 14 state and local laboratories. Some students may say that only convicted criminals should be included in the DNA database. then why not allow access for security personnel at bus stations. How does CODIS work? How is it designed? The FBI Laboratory’s Combined DNA Index System (CODIS) blends forensic science and computer technology into an effective tool for solving crime. SDIS (State DNA Index System). Does including them in the DNA databases violate some of those protections? Does that mark them as a criminal for life? 4. CODIS supports NDIS (National DNA Index System). Some students may say that Transportation Security Agencies that provide airport security should have access to the databases to help track suspected criminals that may pose threats to airline passengers. if you say that everyone’s DNA should be included in the database on the assumption that anyone is capable of committing a crime. are we to suppose that everyone in that family is a criminal or capable of committing crimes? Our legal system is designed to protect juveniles from some of the harsher rules found in the adult criminal legal system. However. and even those who run cruise ships? MIS In Action Explore the Web site for the Combined DNA Index System (CODIS) and answer the following questions. (Answers to the questions below are taken directly from the FBI’s Web site at the following address: http://www. The answers to these questions will vary.gov/hq/lab/html/codis1. train stations. The DNA Identification Act of 1994 formalized the FBI’s authority to establish a national DNA Index System (NDIS) for law enforcement purposes. Who should be able to use DNA databases? Most people will say that all law enforcement agencies should have access to the DNA databases. That poses privacy concerns if the data are misused. that assumes that only convicted criminals will commit future crimes. If that’s true. NDIS is the highest level in the CODIS hierarchy. Including families of suspected or convicted criminals also invites privacy concerns and social problems. then you run into serious privacy questions.

MySpace operated with two Web servers communicating with one database server and a Microsoft SQL Server database. Interactive Session: Technology: The Databases Behind MySpace Case Study Questions 1. qualified DNA analysts in the laboratories sharing matching profiles contact each other to confirm the candidate match. over 170 public law enforcement laboratories participate in NDIS across the United States. such as semen stains or blood • Arrestees: Contains profiles of arrested persons (if state law permits the collection of arrestee samples) • Missing Persons: Contains DNA reference profiles from missing persons • Unidentified Human Remains: Contains DNA profiles developed from unidentified human remains. Internationally. possibly identifying serial offenders. The site continued adding Web servers to handle increased user requests.000 the site added more SQL Server databases: one served as a master database.the national level. Matches made between the forensic and Offender Indexes provide investigators with the identity of a suspected perpetrator(s). 3. Biological Relatives of Missing Persons contains DNA profiles voluntarily contributed from relatives of missing persons. more than 40 law enforcement laboratories in over 25 countries use the CODIS software for their own database initiatives. What information does CODIS maintain? Several indexes categorize the profiles entered into CODIS: • Convicted Offender: Contains profiles of individuals convicted of crimes • Forensic: Contains DNA profiles developed from crime scene evidence. In its initial phases. Describe how MySpace uses databases and database servers. Who is allowed to use CODIS? Today. 4. After the number of accounts exceeded 500. Based upon a match. After two million accounts were activated. Since names and other personally identifiable information are not stored at NDIS. and then flow to SDIS and NDIS. MySpace switched to a vertical partitioning model in which separate databases supported distinct functions of the Web site. Matches made among profiles in the Forensic Index can link crime scenes together. All DNA profiles originate at LDIS. How does CODIS aid criminal investigations? CODIS generates investigative leads in cases where biological evidence is recovered from the crime scene. the others focused on retrieving data for user page requests. police from multiple jurisdictions can coordinate their respective investigations and share the leads they developed independently. . SDIS slows laboratories within states to exchange DNA profiles. 2.

MySpace still overloads more frequently than other major Web sites. MySpace developers continue to redesign the Web site’s database. With a log-in error rate of 20 to 40 percent on some days. It eventually switched to a virtualized storage architecture in which databases write data to any available disk. thus eliminating the possibility of an application’s dedicated disk becoming overloaded. Its databases must make the objects readily available to anyone requesting access to that entity. these problems? Some of the problems MySpace has encountered are inadequate storage space on its database servers. MySpace has attempted to fix these problems by adding more Web servers and more database servers.After three million accounts. Why is database technology so important for a business such as MySpace? Almost everything MySpace receives from and serves to its users are data objects like pictures. Some were simply “added on” without restructuring the entire system to more efficiently use its hardware and software. audio files. groups. and users’ inabilities to access data. That was adequate when the site had a small number of users who were updating or accessing database objects.com. MySpace used two Web servers communicating with one database server. to keep pace with its exploding growth. slow access or no access through its log-in application. Other entities are video files. blogs. the site scaled out by adding many cheaper servers to share the database workload. How effectively does MySpace organize and store the data on its site? In its infancy. . Database technology is the only technology that accomplish the mission. audio files and video files. Obviously that won’t work with tens of millions of users. MIS In Action Explore MySpace. The objects are very individualized and attached to a certain entity (person). MySpace later installed a layer of servers between the database servers and the Web servers to store and serve copies of frequently accessed data objects so that the site’s Web servers wouldn’t have to query the database servers with lookups as frequently 2. or attempted to solve. What data management problems have arisen? How has MySpace solved. the site is not effectively organizing or storing data at all. and email. what are the entities in MySpace’s database? Obviously. and storage systems. favorites. individual users are the main entity in MySpace’s databases. 3. but their job is never done. Based on what you can view without registering. 4. Over the years. events. examining the features and tools that are not restricted to registered members. Then answer the following questions: 1. Workloads were not distributed evenly between servers which caused inefficient use of resources. forums. software. Unfortunately.

and critics’ ratings. lists of repeat Dirt Bikes customers. Which of these entities have some relationship to individual members? Which of the entities have a relationship to individual members depends on what the individual decides. Populate each new table with ten records. Films included in MySpace’s databases likely have these attributes: name. “Managing Data Resources” This section introduces students to some of the critical issues surrounding corporate data. She may also participate in forums or groups. date released. the main point is to show how data management has changed and the reason why data must be organized. and use of information in the organization. querying and reporting Business skills: Customer profiling Redesign Dirt Bikes’ customer database so that it can store and provide the information needed for marketing. Software skills: Database design. director. You will need to develop a design for the new customer database and then implement that design using database software. Dirt Bike customers who attend racing events. actresses. especially the sharing of information that has been controlled exclusively by one organizational group. . Managing the data is the real challenge. date produced. For instance. or harming the data. Section 5. Data planning may need to be performed to make sure that the organization’s data model delivers information efficiently for its business processes and enhances organizational performance. subject.5. In fact.A. Select one of these entities and describe the attributes for that entity. musical scores included in the film. 3.S. modifying. comments of film goers. distribution. Creating a database environment is a long-term endeavor requiring large up-front investments and organizational change. actors. accessed easily by those who need access. Students should realize that setting up the database is only the beginning of the process. There is political resistance in organizations to many key database concepts. and protected from the wrong people accessing. Developing a database environment requires much more than selecting database technology. The organization must also develop a data administration function and a data-planning methodology. Section 5. or the average age and years of schooling of Dirt Bikes customers) and print them. “Hands-On MIS” Improving Decision Making: Redesigning the Customer Database: Dirt Bikes U.2. Consider using multiple tables in your new design. it’s possible that Sarah would have a list of films (video files) attached to her profile. It requires a formal information policy governing the maintenance. awards given to the film. place it was filmed. Develop several reports that would be of great interest to Dirt Bikes’ marketing and sales department (for example.4. It’s possible that all the entities have some relationship to individual members.

and whether they attend dirt bike racing events. The owners might want to add an additional table (or tables) in the database to house information about product sales. 1. and Model. Building a Relational Database for Inventory Management Software skills: Database design. Dirt Bike. The answers to the following questions can be found in the Microsoft Access File named: Ess8ch05solutionfile. and telephone number. Prepare a report that identifies the five most expensive bicycles. The design shown here consists of four tables: Customer. of course. The database would need some modification to answer other important questions about the business. Data on both Dirt Bike’s customer purchases captured from distributors and customer purchases of non. customer date of birth. the quantity on hand for each. purchase price. The report should list the bicycles in descending order from most expensive to lease expensive. and customer name. The solutions provided here were created using the query wizard and report wizard capabilities of Access. Dirt Bikes’s old customer database was modified by breaking it down into these tables. Students can. total volume of sales over a specific period. This particular design tracks repeat Dirt Bikes’s customers through reports of customer purchases showing which customers have purchased more than one Dirt Bike. Students should be encouraged to think creatively about what other pieces of information should be captured on the database that would help the owners manage the business. years of education. address. such as the product identification number. querying and reporting Business Skills: Inventory Management This exercise requires that students know how to create queries and reports using information from multiple tables. date of sale.The solution file represents one of many alternative database designs that would satisfy Dirt Bikes’s requirements. which are the fastest-selling bicycles. for example. . and the markup percentage for each.mdb. additional sport of interest. Management could use this enhanced database to create reports on best selling bikes over a specific period. models are stored in the Purchase table. Distributor. Reports for this solution were developed using Access query and report wizards. The Customers table no longer contains purchase data but it does contain data on e-mail addresses.mdb. date placed in inventory. or best customers. The existing database shows products in inventory and their suppliers. Improving Operational Excellence. An example solution file can be found in the Microsoft Access file named: Ess8ch05 running case solution. create more sophisticated reports if they wish. Purchase. The owners might want to know. the number of bicycles sold during a specific period.

Within each supplier category. Student answers will vary based on the companies they choose to contact.aol. 4. Write a brief description of how the database could be enhanced to further improve management of the business. its products. Remind them of this when they are completing this assignment.com. The report should provide supplier information for the items identified. 3. This assignment may best be accomplished in groups.2. and associated reorder levels.nationwide. and general helpfulness. the products should be sorted alphabetically. The report should be sorted alphabetically by supplier. . ease-of-use. and key fields. What tables or fields should be added? What additional reports would be useful? Improving Decision Making: Searching Online Databases for Overseas Business Resources Software skills: Online databases Business skills: Researching services for overseas operations List the companies you would contact to interview on your trip to determine whether they can help you with these and any other functions you think vital to establishing your office.com. their quantities on hand.au What does this exercise tell you about the design of databases? Students may not understand that the World Wide Web is one massive data warehouse. Review Questions 1. but in non-technical terms that is exactly what it is. attributes. The U. where they can consolidate their findings into a written or oral presentation. it may be simpler to direct your students to go to http://www. How does a relational database organize data and how does it differ from an objectoriented database? Define and explain the significance of entities.S. Prepare a report listing only the bicycles that are low in stock and need to be reordered. The Web site for the Nationwide Business Directory of Australia is http://www. Rate the databases you used for accuracy of name. However. Department of Commerce Web site contains a fair amount of economic information. Prepare a report that lists each supplier. completeness.

whereas a social security number is unique. For example. The process of breaking down complex groupings of data and streamlining them to minimize redundancy and awkward many-to-many relationships is called normalization. a person’s name cannot be a key because there can be another person with the same name. An object-oriented DBMS stores the data and procedures that act on those data as objects that can be automatically retrieved and shared. storing.• • • Entity is a person. A well-designed relational database will not have many-to-many relationships. Each table contains data on an entity and its attributes. or sorted. they are relatively slow compared with relational DBMS for processing large numbers of transactions. 2. . A database management system (DBMS) is a specific type of software for creating. Define a relational database and explain how it organizes and stores information. Explain the role of entity-relationship diagrams and normalization in database design. Each row represents a record and each column represents an attribute or field. Also a product name may not be unique but a product number can be designed to be unique. Object-oriented database management systems (OODBMS) are becoming popular because they can be used to manage the various multimedia components or Java applets used in Web applications. Relational databases organize data into two-dimensional tables (called relations) with columns and rows. An entity-relationship diagram graphically depicts the relationship between entities (tables) in a relational database. The relational database is the primary method for organizing and maintaining data today in information systems. Each table contains data about an entity and its attributes. Each table also contains a key field to uniquely identify each record for retrieval or manipulation. Define an object-oriented database and explain how it differs from a relational database. Key field is a field in a record that uniquely identifies instances of that unique record so that it can be retrieved. It organizes data in two-dimensional tables with rows and columns called relations. and all attributes for a specific entity will only apply to that entity. Attribute is a piece of information describing a particular entity. which typically integrate pieces of information from a variety of sources. thing. place. Although object-oriented databases can store more complex types of information than relational DBMS. or event on which information can be obtained. updated. What are the principles of a database management system? Define a database management system (DBMS) and describe how it works and its benefits to organizations.

A DBMS consists of software that permits centralization of data and data management so that businesses have a single. including names. whereas the physical view shows how data are actually organized and structured on physical storage media. In a relational database.. data dictionary. such as a hard disk. The principal capabilities of a DBMS include data definition language. select creates a subset of rows that meet certain criteria. managing. permitting the user to create new tables that contain only the information required. Define and compare the logical and physical views of data.g. such as SQL.e. A DBMS includes capabilities and tools for organizing. formats. A data warehouse is a database with archival. statistical tools) and is used for storing historical and current data of potential interest to managers throughout the organization and from external sources (e. The DBMS retrieves information so that the user does not have to be concerned with its physical location. • Select operation creates a subset consisting of all records in the file that meet stated criteria. The user works with a logical view of data.organizing. and accessing data from a database. • The data manipulation language. and join. is a specialized language for accessing and manipulating the data in the database. consistent source for all their data needs. 3. competitor sales or . Name and describe the three major capabilities of a DBMS.. definitions. The logical view presents data as end users or business specialists would perceive them. • Project operation creates a subset consisting of columns in a table. and descriptions of data elements. What are the principal tools and technologies for accessing information from databases to improve business performance and decision making? Define a data warehouse and describe how it works. project. • Joint operation combines relational tables to provide the user with more information that is available in individual tables. • The data dictionary is an automated or manual file that stores information about the data in the database. querying. A single database services multiple applications. The DBMS relieves the end user or programmer from the task of understanding where and how the data are actually stored by separating the logical and physical views of the data. and data manipulation language. • The data definition language specifies the structure and content of the database. In other words. and accessing the data in the database. Define and describe the three operations of a relational database management system. and data exploration tools (i. three basic operations are used to develop useful sets of data: select. The most important feature of the DBMS is its ability to separate the logical and physical views of data.

Data warehouses support looking at the data of the organization through many views or directions. Define data mining describe what types of information can be obtained from it. Powerful tools are available to analyze and access information that has been captured and organized in data warehouses and data marts. Each aspect of information represents a different dimension. The data warehouse makes the data available to anyone to access as needed. The types of information obtained from data mining include associations. . OLAP represents relationships among data as a multidimensional structure. Normal operational databases do not permit such different views. OLAP enables users to obtain online answers to ad hoc questions in a fairly rapid amount of time. also known as online analytical processing (OLAP). Principal tools for business intelligence include software for database query and reporting tools for multidimensional data analysis and data mining. and providing access to vast amounts of data to help users make better business decisions are often referred to as business intelligence. analyzing. by store. Define business intelligence and explain how it is related to database technology. even when the data are stored in very large databases. These tools enable users to analyze the data to see new patterns. classifications. analytical tools. and forecasts. Online analytical processing and data mining enable the manipulation and analysis of large volumes of data from many perspectives. enabling more sophisticated data analysis. sequences. relationships. The patterns and rules are used to guide decision making and forecast the effect of those decisions. sales by item. by department.market share). by region. and explain how it differs from OLAP. which can be visualized as cubes of data and cubes within cubes of data. in order to find patterns in the data. The data in the warehouse are organized according to company-wide standards so that they can be used for management analysis and decision making. for example. Describe the capabilities of online analytical processing (OLAP). essentially different slices of the data. by salesperson. but it cannot be altered. Data warehouses support multidimensional data analysis. which can be visualized as cubes of data and cubes within cubes of data. OLAP represents relationships among data as a multidimensional structure. enabling more sophisticated data analysis. by year. Data mining provides insights into corporate data that cannot be obtained with OLAP by finding hidden patterns and relationships in large databases and inferring rules from them to predict future behavior. These tools for consolidating. which is why a data warehouse and data mining are usually parts of OLAP. A data warehouse system also provides a range of ad hoc and standardized query tools. and insights that are useful for guiding decision making. which enables users to view the same data in different ways using multiple dimensions. Such patterns are difficult to find with normal database methods. The data originate in many of the operational areas and are copied into the data warehouse as often as needed. and graphical reporting facilities. The data warehouse system allows managers to look at products by customer. clusters.

planning for data. where information can be distributed. An information policy specifies the organization’s rules for sharing. The software working between the Web server and the DBMS can be an application server. Data administration is responsible for the specific policies and procedures through which data can be managed as an organizational resource. Because many back-end databases cannot interpret commands written in HTML. Information policy lays out specific procedures and accountabilities. disseminating. and inventorying information. as well as for data planning. The Web browser software requests data from the organization’s database. overseeing logical database design and data dictionary development. The middleware transfers information from the organization’s internal database back to the Web server for delivery in the form of a Web page to the user. standardizing. incomplete. and who is responsible for updating and maintaining the information. Conventional databases can be linked via middleware to the Web or a Web interface to facilitate user access to an organization’s internal data. 5. data dictionary development. a custom program. Data that are inaccurate. What is the role of information policy and data administration in the management of organizational data resources? Define information policy and data administration and explain how they help organizations manage their data. In large corporations. identifying which users and organizational units can share information. a formal data administration function is responsible for information policy. using HTML commands to communicate with the Web server. or inconsistent create serious operational and financial problems for businesses because they may create inaccuracies in product pricing. or a series of software scripts. and monitoring how information systems specialists and end-user groups use data. acquiring. customer . 4. These responsibilities include developing information policy. Why is data quality assurance so important for a business? List and describe the most common data quality problems. and monitoring data usage in the firm.Explain how users can access information from a company’s internal databases through the Web. classifying. the Web server passes these requests for data to special middleware software that then translates HTML commands into SQL so that they can be processed by the DBMS working with the database. Web browser software on his/her client PC is used to access a corporate Web site over the Internet. The DBMS receives the SQL requests and provides the required data.

and inventory data. It is not mandated that a database have a DBMS. To what extent should end users be involved in the selection of a database management system and database design? End users should be involved in the selection of a database management system and the database design. and lead to inaccurate decisions about the actions that should be taken by the firm. and security. Discuss. or redundant. and data cleansing software. The DBMS allows the organization to centrally manage data. 2. Developing a database environment requires much more than just selecting the technology. Access and availability of information can be increased because users and programmers can perform ad-hoc queries of data in the database. Data cleansing not only corrects data but also enforces consistency among different sets of data that originated in separate information systems. surveying samples from data files. especially to sharing information that has been controlled exclusively by one organizational group. improperly formatted.accounts. A DBMS is special software to create and maintain a database. Discussion Questions 1. The end-user involvement can be instrumental in mitigating the political resistance organizations may have to many key database concepts. Firms must take special steps to make sure they have a high level of data quality. . Data quality audits can be performed by surveying entire data files. What is most important is the concept of a database — a model for organizing information so that it can be stored and accessed flexibly and efficiently. It has been said that you do not need database management software to create a database environment. or surveying end users for their perceptions of data quality. A data quality audit is a structured survey of the accuracy and level of completeness of the data in an information system. The organization must develop a data administration function and a data planning methodology. data quality audits. the use of a DBMS can reduce program-data dependence along with program development and maintenance costs. a DBMS is not effective. Data cleansing consists of activities for detecting and correcting data in a database that are incorrect. A database is a collection of data organized to service many applications at the same time by storing and managing data so that they appear to be in one location. It enables individual business applications to extract the data they need without having to create separate files or data definitions in their computer programs. List and describe the most important tools and techniques for assuring data quality. However. its use. incomplete. These include using enterprise-wide data standards. databases designed to minimize inconsistent and redundant data. Without the right vision of a database and data model. It requires a change in the corporation’s attitude toward information.

Teamwork: Identifying Entities and Attributes in an Online Database With a group of two or three of your fellow students. If possible. use electronic presentation software to present your findings to the class. select an online database to explore.aol. http://music.com/ http://gracenote. organization. and technology factors were responsible for creating this problem? At one time HP had • 5000 information system applications • 85 computer centers • Between 19.000 servers • 17 different database technologies • 14. Identify the problem described in this case.000 and 22.Video Case Questions You will find a video case illustrating some of the concepts in this chapter on the Laudon Web site at www.com/laudon along with questions to help you analyze the case. Direct your students to these Web sites. What people.000 different databases in use With all of that computing capacity the organization had these data-related problems: • It couldn’t collect and analyze “consistent. diagram the relationship between the entities you have identified. If possible. Explore these Web sites to see what information they provide. such as AOL Music or the Internet Movie Database.prenhall.com are listed below. The Web sites for AOL Music and Gracenote. There are hundreds of Internet Movie Databases so students will have to select the one that interests them. In their analysis. students should quickly articulate that many of these sites use the same entities and attributes to keep track of their database. timely data spanning different parts of the business • Systems tracked sales data differently • Commonly used financial information was calculated differently in different business units .com/ Business Problem-Solving Case: Can HP Mine Success from an Enterprise Data Warehouse? 1. Then list the entities and attributes that they must keep track of in their databases.

Since the company anticipates the database will double in size at its completion. consolidated database that is easily and quickly available to over 50.• • Compiling information from various systems could take up to a week Seemingly simple questions were difficult to answer Without a consistent view of the enterprise. it’s assumed the team built scalability into the new hardware and software. Knowledge of database technology and design principles are talents that are hard to find in a large pool of potential employees—techies and non-techies. 2. He had three goals for the database: it had to always be up-to-date. What solution has HP chosen to fix this problem? Did management select the best solution alternative? HP CIO Randy Mott began consolidating hundreds of data marts into a single data warehouse. HP experienced political turf issues. consistent for the entire enterprise. Even though HP wanted its data warehouse to give its workforce access to data in real time with no departmental or geographic boundaries. senior executives struggled with decisions on matters such as the size of sales and service teams assigned to particular systems. Whether management selected the best solution alternative is based on individual perceptions and experiences. Organization: HP had too many different information system applications in too many computer centers. Many of them preferred smaller data marts configured to their particular needs. Factors that were responsible for creating this problem include: People: As with most companies. It had too many different database technologies and way too many different databases. Technology: All-inclusive data warehouses require enormous work to organize and integrate all the data. As with most organizations. manage and use their own databases without regard towards sharing the data with other departments—islands of information at their finest. consolidated data warehouses will probably agree with HP’s solution. especially . The fact remains that the company had to do something about its data problems. Not all departments want to depend on a central data warehouse supported by a centralized information systems staff for their data-analysis needs. HP’s departmental users initially resisted the idea of a central data warehouse. At its implementation the warehouse contains 180 terabytes of raw data and 75 terabytes of functional data. He created a 300-person team that had experience in running data marts and charged them with modeling the enterprise-wide database. Others who’ve not had good success working with data warehouses probably will not agree with HP’s solution. departments were allowed to create. its old system fell far short of that goal. HP lacked the hardware and software that would allow it to build such a large. and complete. Those students who’ve had good success working with very large. The new database uses proprietary software developed by internal employees.000 users.

describe the steps you would have to take to complete this project. and train some more so users have a . technical and business units users. How much will HP’s database experience and technology help HP and its clients build all-inclusive data warehouses? The fact that HP built its own data warehouse and had to experience the pain first-hand lends credence to the Neoview system as a potential product and service it can sell to other organizations. List and describe all of the people. and consistent information to managers. It will understand the people. How much will Neoview help HP and its clients create enterprise-wide data warehouses? Explain your answer. Issues that must be addressed to build an enterprise-wide data warehouse successfully include: People: Perhaps the most important issue is to convince employees. complete. The Neoview system was designed from the ground up to be an all-inclusive data warehouse that provides dexterity with table joins and gives the system the ability to perform analysis functions at the same time that it’s managing new incoming data. 3. Most warehouses don’t have that feature. which are costly. It simply did not give the organization a clear. The organization’s change agent is responsible for ensuring all the people in the organization accept the new system. organization. It includes all of the data used by a company and not just partial segments of data or the company. and technology problems that other companies will have to work through. The second step is to assemble the right people. HP promotes Neoview by differentiating it from typical data warehouses. concise. Apparently HP has had good success since it has been able to market the home-grown system to other companies. and executives that the new system will be better than the old one. In HP’s case the real problem was that data was inconsistent across the organization and the current system was slow to provide information to users. The first step is to identify the real problem. organization. train. and technology issues that must be addressed to build an enterprise-wide data warehouse successfully. If you were in charge of developing an enterprise-wide data warehouse for your company.the inability to serve timely. use proprietary technology (although so does Neoview). Train. 4. managers. and consistent view of the entire enterprise. 5. The third step is to implement the solution and the fourth step is to maintain the new system and processes. that could develop an acceptable solution for the entire enterprise. and tend to focus on one area of a business rather than an entire enterprise. Assemble the right people—techies and non-techies—that have the business knowledge and technical knowledge to build the database. It can offer real-world advice and expertise based on its own experiences.

The system is highly scalable and promises availability 99. complete. Technology: HP’s new system has familiar components that will create a larger pool of people with the knowledge to run most data warehouses. It organizes data in two-dimensional tables with rows and columns called relations. Each table also contains a key field to uniquely identify each record for retrieval or manipulation.complete knowledge of the new system. The new system will emphasize cost and flexibility. Each row represents a record and each column represents an attribute or field. or least reduce. the political turf battles inherent in the old system. formats. Each table contains data about an entity and its attributes. An object-oriented DBMS stores data and procedures that act on the data as objects.1: The Database Approach to Data Management The relational database is the primary method for organizing and maintaining data today in information systems. The process of breaking down complex groupings of data and streamlining them to minimize redundancy and awkward many-to-many relationships is called normalization. and up-to-date information across all organizational boundaries. and . A welldesigned relational database will not have many-to-many relationships. Show how the organization will benefit from a better system by having consistent. The most important feature of the DBMS is its ability to separate the logical and physical views of data. An entity-relationship diagram graphically depicts the relationship between entities (tables) in a relational database. Organization: Solve. Section 5. Neoview’s hardware can be used to run other applications aside from those connected to the data warehouse. and all attributes for a specific entity will only apply to that entity.999 % of the time. definitions. The data dictionary is an automated or manual file that stores information about the data in the database. A single database services multiple applications. and it can handle multimedia as well as characters and numbers. The principal capabilities of a DBMS include a data definition capability. including names. and a data manipulation language. Neoview’s system uses servers with Itanium processors from Intel so they meet industry standards and are more versatile than servers with proprietary technology. Most other warehouses in use do not incorporate 100 percent of a company’s data as HP contends Neoview will.2: Database Management Systems A database management system (DBMS) consists of software that permits centralization of data and data management so that businesses have a single consistent source for all their data needs. Chapter Summary Section 5. a data dictionary capability. The DBMS retrieves information so that the user does not have to be concerned with its physical location. The user works with a logical view of data. The data definition language specifies the structure and content of the database.

The data manipulation language. A formal information policy governs the maintenance. These include using enterprise-wide data standards. to find patterns and rules that can be used to predict further behavior and guide decision making. a formal data administration function is responsible for information policy. and inventory data. which can be visualized as cubes of data and cubes within cubes of data. data dictionary development.3: Using Databases to Improve Business Performance and Decision Making Powerful tools are available to analyze and access the information in databases. as well as for data planning. data quality audits. Section 5. Section 5. or inconsistent create serious operational and financial problems for businesses because they may create inaccuracies in product pricing. and lead to inaccurate decisions about the actions that should be taken by the firm. Conventional databases can be linked via middleware to the Web or a Web interface to facilitate user access to an organization’s internal data. distribution. Data that are inaccurate. also known as online analytical processing (OLAP). incomplete. Firms must take special steps to make sure they have a high level of data quality. such as SQL. Data mining analyzes large pools of data. including the contents of data warehouses. databases designed to minimize inconsistent and redundant data.4: Managing Data Resources Developing a database environment requires policies and procedures for managing organizational data as well as a good data model and database technology. . Data warehouses support multidimensional data analysis. and use of information in the organization. In large corporations. A data warehouse consolidates current and historical data from many different operational systems in a central database for reporting and analysis.descriptions of data elements. OLAP represents relationships among data as a multidimensional structure. is a specialized language for accessing and manipulating the data in the database. customer accounts. and monitoring data usage in the firm. enabling more sophisticated data analysis. and data cleansing software.

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