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Can You Trust Migrating Your Enterprise Data Warehouse To The Cloud?

By annie shum | November 18, 2009

Dollar General Corp. replaces Oracle and HP with 1010data’s hosted analytics/data warehousing service

October 8, 2009 – 1010data has signed a multi-year contract with Dollar General to host the retailer’s enterprise data warehouse and provide the front-end analytical tools and related support for their entire enterprise. This solution is being delivered via 1010data’s namesake service, an analytics and reporting platform as a software as a service model in the cloud. With this contract, Dollar General becomes the first major retailer to adopt this model.

Dollar General, the largest discount retailer in the United States by number of stores, currently generates more than 5 billion records of data annually and has accumulated over 70 billion records of historical and operational data. Rapidly growing data volumes have exhausted the capabilities of the company’s existing data warehouse infrastructure. Under the agreement, Dollar General will use 1010data’s hosted solution for all data warehousing needs for its operations, including more than 8,500 stores, nine distribution centers and a corporate office in Goodlettsville, Tennessee.

”Our solution provides Dollar General with a place where their most detailed source data is hosted for all users to access with permission over the Internet,” said Jim Mattecheck, VP of the retail solutions group for 1010data in a statement. Mattecheck also stated that Dollar General’s decision to be the first major retailer to embrace an outsourcing strategy for its EDW signals a fundamental shift in how retailers are thinking about the value of their data and the business opportunities provided with insight on demand.

This announcement signals a shift outside of the retail space as well. One year ago, independent industry analyst Lou Agosta wrote that it was difficult to imagine anyone moving an existing multiterabyte data warehouse to the cloud, but he admits times are changing.

“It is a special pleasure to have to eat one’s words since that is where one is able to learn and grow personally and professionally,”

Agosta told Information Management. He believes that the client, vendor and analyst communities are all going to learn a lot from 1010data/Dollar General undertaking. While Agosta offers encouragement for such an undertaking into new realms of outsourcing, Saas and cloud computing, he also offers words of caution for companies considering such a model.

“Critical success factors in transforming the press release into a successful implementation include a rigorous yet flexible service level agreement (SLA) between the client and the vendor; upstream, low latency data integration to identify which consumer regions are buying what products and when and where are they doing so; a usable front end that delivers the ‘ah-ha! moment’ synthesized in the background; and some serious bandwidth, i.e., pipes, so that the network functions as a whole. The front end is for show; data integration is for dough.”

Information Management Online, October 8, 2009 Julie Langenkamp

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