Building the Data Warehouse

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There are, then, some substantial differences between the operational and data warehouse environments, and these differences show up in the way design review is conducted.

When to Do Design Review

Design review in the data warehouse environment is done as soon as a major subject area has been designed and is ready to be added to the data warehouse environment. It does not need to be done for every new database that goes up. Instead, as whole new major subject areas are added to the database, design review becomes an appropriate activity.

Who Should Be in the Design Review?

The attendees at the design review include anyone who has a stake in the development, operation, or use of the DSS subject area being reviewed.

Normally, this includes the following parties:

■■ The data administration (DA)

■■ The database administration (DBA)

■    Programmers

■■ The DSS analysts

■■ End users other than the DSS analysts

■    Operations

■■ Systems support

■    Management

Of this group, by far the most important attendees are the end users and the DSS analysts.

One important benefit from having all the parties in the same room at the same time is the opportunity to short-circuit miscommunications. In an everyday environment where the end user talks to the liaison person who talks to the designer who talks to the programmer, there is ample opportunity for miscom-munication and misinterpretation. When all the parties are gathered, direct conversations can occur that are beneficial to the health of the project being reviewed.

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