Go-Live: the Big Bang moment when your Microsoft Dynamics NAV or AX Universe comes into existence. Switching the transaction processing system on immediately sees numerous inter-related modules, tables and fields burst into life and begin a seemingly never-ending journey of expansion. Server space is rapidly occupied with data matter as orders get raised, inventory shipped and invoices posted. Over time, new tables and fields are formed and the complex galaxies of information become larger and more disparate. Reassuringly, Dynamics’ laws of relativity maintain order throughout the cosmos, governing the posting procedures and transactional relationships of the Enterprise Resource Planning system as the business trades, develops and progresses.
In parallel, there exists a compelling desire to observe this universe of information; to investigate its hidden patterns and discover that which lies at its outer most reaches. A desire to understand what drives and influences its growth and expansion; to explore its historical trends and variations. This desire continues to present us with an ever-evolving set of possible solutions.
Telescopic data extraction tool-kits,(once set up and pointing in the right direction) have allowed us to gaze at isolated tables and their modules (the planets and galaxies of the data universe). Slowly but surely, understanding is gained as information is extracted, compared and compiled. The process, however, is painstakingly slow and repetitive and although discoveries are often interesting and informative, achieving the wider picture involves meticulous manual reconciliation between the findings gathered from differing perspectives.
Data cubes, like satellites, have taken us a step further. Bringing the planets closer, they have allowed us to look, by a more automated means, at information from an increasing number of angles and perspectives; providing us a more multi-dimensional view. The limitation remains, however, that even a team of satellites can only orbit and patrol any one galaxy at a time. Some galaxies are simply out of observational reach and the big picture still remains elusive.
A New Approach: Where information exists, it is surely a reasonable expectation that it can be made accessible to management in an intuitive andaccurately reconciled form; for the essential elements of the Dynamics information universe to be brought within the immediate reach of those who actually need to answer the questions of the business.
In order to gain the most useful and advanced analytical starting point, the information universe needs to be automatically compressed and shaped into a precise model which connects all that is needed to enable Business Intelligence . Only by connecting the data and beaming it down to one place, can the users immediately find themselves just a small step from the answers they seek.