Reporting in a hurry with Azure
A new document was required for the Board. It was a Financial Services Authority requirement, called Treating Customers Fairly. The prototype looked really slick, with tables, and graphs, and everything.
However, the prototype had been assembled from bits and pieces of everything from many sources, and stitched together by hand. The publishing tool that had been used was PowerPoint, and the result was a bound PDF.
The assignment (should I choose to accept it) was to automate production of this document, identifying all the various data sources, providing a mechanism for collating the information, storing it, providing a mechanism to do historical analyses and trends, and laying the foundation for online viewing of dashboards depicting each section of the report. And generate a production-quality printed version for distribution.
The deadline was eight weeks.
Various technical options such as Microsoft Office and on-premises SharePoint were assessed and rejected. The chosen path was Azure, with SQL Database and SQL Reporting.
This presentation outlines the highlights of the project, identifying what went right and what went wrong, as well as the strengths and weaknesses of the approach. Most importantly, the presentation describes the advantages and limitations of using Azure for what is essentially provision of corporate Business Intelligence.
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Donna Kelly is a seasoned Business Intelligence professional. She is equally at ease negotiating contracts with vendors on behalf of her clients, as she is conducting workshops at executive and board level of blue-chip organisations.
Her experience is mainly as programme manager, enterprise architect, and 'C' level interim, with primary focus on programme delivery. As a technical guru, she will often mentor and coach client staff in the intricacies of the technology.
She is a well-known public speaker, and has addressed audiences such as the National Congress of the Information Processing Society of Canada, on Evolutionary Development Methodology. Her latest speech in London was on the cultural issues and difficulties involved, when introducing business intelligence into organisations.
Of late, she is building Redwing Business Intelligence into a specialist provider of Performance Measurement and Management to NHS Hospital Trusts. This encompasses software, systems, services, coaching, and training in best practice.
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