Thursday, June 18, 2009

Can you describe Oracle BI Applications?

Well, apparently many people (including Oracle employees) have great difficulties explaining what Oracle BI Applications are exactly. In technical terms that is. There is so much marketing talk about it - but when it comes to the point question "What is it?" - then I see a lot of fail. I will not comment on the various blurbs but try do do my own (blurb).

Screenshot from a standard dashboard for Siebel Loyalty Analytics

Here is my try (in elevator-pitch mode):

Oracle BI Applications are installed on top of the Oracle BI EE 10g infrastructure and include

  • A prebuilt Informatica repository which includes mappings (wrapped in workflows) to extract data from the supported source systems (various versions of standard applications such as Siebel CRM - yes it was first - , Oracle eBusiness Suite, Peoplesoft, JDEdwards and SAP (BI Apps version 7.8.4) ) and load the data into the Oracle Business Analysis Warehouse. (Note: Oracle BI Applications version includes a repository for the Oracle Data Integrator instead of Informatica but supports only Oracle Financials).

  • The Oracle Business Analysis Warehouse (OBAW), a prebuilt schema (stars that is) which serves as a turnkey data warehouse including dozens of stars and accompanying indexes, aggregates, time dimensions and slowly changing dimension handling (and yes, it can be optimized).

  • A prebuilt repository for the Data Warehouse Administration Console (DAC) server which is the orchestration engine behind the ETL process. The DAC client and server were included until version 7.9.5. Since then it is a separate installer.

  • A prebuilt Oracle BI Server repository (rpd file) which maps the OBAW physical tables to a generic business model and includes more than 100 presentation catalogs (aka subject areas) to allow queries and segmentation using Oracle BI clients such as Answers, Dashboards and Segment Designer. Did I mention that it also takes care of authentication and data security?

  • A prebuilt presentation catalog (repository) containing hundreds of requests and ready-to-use dashboards which enable tight integration between the source applications and the BI infrastructure (example: Click the Service Analytics screen in Siebel CRM, work with the dashboard data, drill down to details and click an action button to navigate back to the Siebel CRM record).

For the hard of hearing: Yes, Oracle BI EE 10g is the successor of Siebel Analytics and Oracle BI Applications is the successor of Siebel Analytics Applications.

There is plenty of documentation and training available for Oracle BI Applications. Very much like in ERP and CRM applications there is an (unstoppable) trend towards standard-based projects. So if you work in the BI area, you should get those skills better sooner than later.

Can you do better? Drop a comment!

have a nice day


1 comment:

kamlesh said...

Hi Alex,

you idea of BI apps is really good.Thanks for mentioning that ODI comes with only Financials dashboards.Any more updates on this with ODI ?I am interested to know about that.