There comes a time when data analysis requirements surpass the capacity of standard reporting applications. As you realize that tools such as Google Analytics or Mixpanel are limited, you might need to build a Business Intelligence (BI) solution that is robust and precise. Now, to build a custom BI solution, you need to lay a foundation of data integration, alternatively called ETL (Extract, Transform, Load). Know what ETL is and how beneficial it is for businesses here.
A Deep Dive Into Extract, Transform, Load
Companies, in general, have access to myriad data sources but, more often than not, the data that resides in them are presented in a way that is less useful for them. Here lies the value of a powerful solution such as ETL.
ETL is a technology that allows businesses collect and process data from various sources into one data store where it can be analyzed and used for various purposes. The end result of the analysis can be used to design effective strategies and decisions for the business. To understand better, take a look at each segment of the ETL process more closely.
Extract: This is the step where a data source is targeted and data is pulled from it that can be transformed, integrated, and stored elsewhere.
Transform: Since data doesn’t necessarily reside in the form a business wants or expects, the need for transforming it becomes dire. In this step, data gathered is transformed, cleaned, and harmonized so that the end-user can interpret it without any difficulty.
Load: In this final step, data is stored in a warehouse or target repository after sorting, cleaning, validating, and preparing data. The stored data can be used for future analysis.
ETL Empowers Business
ETL software has revolutionized the world of business by saving the additional time required for data extraction and preparation, which is time that could be better spent on evaluating and using that data in business. Each of the steps helps data scientists and data analysts analyze data (heterogenous as well as homogenous) and extract business intelligence from it without losing time or compromising accuracy.
ETL solutions are much faster to use as opposed to traditional methods that were slow and complex. For better understanding, dive into its three stages again:
Extract: “A chain is only strong as its weakest link”. This saying fits the context of ETL in toto. In other words, the outcome of the ETL chain is also determined by its first link, i.e. extract. In the extract stage, data sources are identified, their refresh rate and priorities are determined. This impacts time-to-insights heavily.
Transform: After the data is extracted, transformation is carried out to bring clarity and order to the original data swamp. Dates are consolidated into time brackets, transactions are modelled into events, data locations are converted to coordinated, to name a few.
Load: The transformed data is finally stored in a warehouse. This phase also determines whether the loading will be done on an incremental or continual basis.
Apart from increasing the speed of data management processes, ETL allows companies meet myriad data demands and sustain data democracy. Some of the most important benefits offered by ETL software are:
1. Ease of use: Any tool that is not simple introduces complications. One of the primary reasons why companies prefer modern ETL data integration technology is its ease of use feature. The job of the tool is to specify data sources for data extraction and analyzation followed by transformation and loading. And so the need for coding in a conventional sense gets completely eliminated, making the process simpler, faster, and better.
2. Operational Resilience: A multitude of data warehouses happens to be fragile and error-prone. With built-in error handling functionality, ETL tools empower data engineers to build a resilient and well-orchestrated system that is robust and error-free.
3. Data Quality: In the transform stage, data sets are converted into universal standards and this paves the way for clean and effective data models. ETL also provides the opportunity to make data semantically consistent, thereby making it more useful as well as approachable to primary stakeholders. With additional enrichment steps such as, tweaking, geo modifications, injecting expert knowledge, matching sources, and correction, ETL improves the quality of data that directly impacts business decisions.
4. Business Intelligence: The access to data improves as ETL streamlines and accelerates processes like extraction, transformation, and loading. With improved data access, organizations can easily make informed strategic and operational decisions with ease and precision. These solutions enable business leaders derive information from the data and act accordingly.
5. Higher Performance: ETL data integration solutions provide an enormous performance boost to business intelligence users. They do so by simplifying the process of building a high-quality data warehousing system and improving the quality of data.
6. Higher Returns: Since ETL software increases the speed of data processing and eliminate delays of all kind, they help saving additional costs too. It empowers business users to offer delightful experiences to customers which, in turn, increases sales and ultimately revenue.
Set Path Forward with a Powerful ETL Solution
There is no denying the fact that ETL technology is immensely useful, however, not all offer the same kind of results. While some are more customer-centric, a few are data-centric. So, what kind of ETL solution would you choose?
To avoid any confusion, one must pay heed to their specific requirements and customer demands before picking a solution. One of them is Adeptia Connect. With an easy, intuitive, effective, and efficient interface, it allows business users access their data in real-time and transform it as per requirements in an accurate fashion. It enables all types of data transformations like:
Flat file to XML
Excel to Database
XML to CSV
XML to EDI
HIPAA to XML
HL7 to XML, and more
This improves business intelligence, enhances performance, and streamlines revenue generation. In addition, Adeptia’s ETL tool strengthens IT teams to manage data processes, improving their productivity.
So, are you ready to move forward with your custom ETL solution? Know how easier it is to extract, transform, load data with Adeptia here.