Do You Need Data Warehousing Consultants? - dummies

Do You Need Data Warehousing Consultants?

By Thomas C. Hammergren

You probably need data warehousing consultants, not because people from within your organization aren’t capable of working with data warehousing technology or completing a project without outside help. A simple fact of current corporate IT life overwhelms factors such as capabilities and knowledge: this is a consulting-driven era, plain and simple.

Since the early 1980s, and the demand year after year for outside consulting expertise in nearly every medium- to large-size organization has skyrocketed remarkably. The increased demand for consulting services partly stems from the convergence of two major factors:

  • The increasing pace of technological change: Client/server computing, the Internet, and improvements in relational database capabilities, for example.

  • The aftereffects of the U.S. economic recessions and downturns in the early 1990s, 2000s, and the current market: Although some areas were hit harder than others, companies across the board were hit hard by downsizing, reengineering, and the rest of the slow-economy stuff that we all know so well. Corporate IT organizations continue operating under the “stay lean and mean” philosophy.

The combination of these two factors means that outside consulting organizations are doing (at least, in part) an overwhelming majority of new systems development, including data warehousing.

You can always fight the trend and try to do in-house data warehouse development, and you can easily be successful. Your internal IT staff is probably spread fairly thinly across a multitude of initiatives, however, and applying for personnel requisitions for a major hiring plan is just plain out of style in most corporations. (Can you say outsourcing? Off shoring?)

Try to accomplish your data warehousing initiatives through the use of in-house staff, either exclusively or with the majority of your team members, at least, being employees of your organization. If your organization is like most others, though, your data warehousing fate rests solely on how well you identify and use outside data warehousing consulting expertise.