Auckland data warehouse developer WhereScape’s global deal with US-based Ross Systems to implement its innovative technology for Ross customers is paying dividends. Ross Systems has already signed up seven companies in the US.
Warehouses can be complex and expensive projects. Where-Scape founder Michael Whitehead says there are two major differentiators with his software: the speed at which warehouses can be built, and the fact that WhereScape covers the entire lifecycle of a warehouse, from the building and maintenance through to enhancement and changes.
The company has signed up a number of new customers since it moved from its consulting origins in 1999 to becoming a developer in 2002. New Zealand customers include Fonterra, Vodafone, Placemakers, Southern Cross and The Warehouse. In the UK, its best-known customers are Gillette and bookmaker William Hill.
Now, the growth focus is on the US where it recently opened an office.
“More than half our business is offshore,” Whitehead says.
Typical turn-key warehouse solutions provide templated reports and analysis of a standardised nature but can’t be modified easily without users learning a proprietary tool or being very well-versed in the data. Building an extensible data warehouse internally is a long, expensive exercise.
WhereScape RED enables the customer to add and merge data into a single dimensional data warehouse or data mart without using proprietary
languages and platforms.
The development framework and auto-generated documentation of RED means that consultants and customers can easily pick up the processing and structure of the warehouse for troubleshooting or extending the design. The warehouse or data mart can be easily modified when the customer wants to integrate other data into the reporting repository, Whitehead says.
“Ross Systems say it enables them to implement and customise analytics within 14 days,” he says. “At the most basic level, we have been able to implement a warehouse within one day.” That was at New Zealand clothing chain Just Kids.
He says a larger warehouse site such as Southern Cross took a matter of weeks to implement and then “three months or so” to add complexity.
The differences between data warehouses and data marts have become blurred, he says.
WhereScape employs 30 staff, including contractors.