Cost Benefits Through Business Organization Technology Assessment

Over the period of 10 years, a leading healthcare solution provider had been through merger and acquisition cycles integrating the offerings of the companies acquired into their line of business. Although, this garnered their business value offerings to the customers and broadened their market reach, it internally led to a disparate array of backend data sources ranging across: MS-Access, Oracle, SQL Server, etc. Similarly for the front end reporting needs, client uses multiple tools i.e. Power Builder, MS – Assess, Cognos and SAS.

Business Need

The key business challenges were:

• The current Data warehouse solution needs to be evaluated and re-architected, considering past and future business requirements.

• Currently, there are several resources that are focused in generating reports for various customers of client. Due to the current data warehouse design, disparate data sources and other unknown technical dependencies, time taken by these analysts is significant to generate the reports, thereby increasing the cost of conducting business.

• The usage of current BI/ DWH tools need to be evaluated and if required to be consolidated. The objective is to utilize those tools that are more pertinent to the business need, thereby reducing maintenance costs.

• Help to identify and automate overall ETL, OLAP and reporting process is a key element as this will help reduce manual dependencies, cause less human error and will be a good scalable option for similar or repetitive reporting needs from customers.

• Other challenge of providing timely delivery of reports to customers, due to complex internal environment set-up and dependencies on internal and external data feeds can be eliminated or minimized.

Solution

A Business Needs assessment includes an analysis of the underlying business drivers and objectives and overall context of business need that has been established for the client’s Data Warehouse. When business needs have been defined, the assessment process examines the approach to capturing business requirements, their completeness, the priorities of the requirements, and alignment of the data warehouse release strategy and deliverables to the needs.

The team conducted a high level assessment as follows:

• Interview with various Stakeholder i.e. Leadership team, Business subject matter experts, Technical subject matter experts, Infrastructure and IT, Business end users.

• Assessment of current technical architecture.

• Assessment of organizational and infrastructure readiness to support value transparency initiatives including key gaps.

• Assessment of cost/value improvement opportunities.

• Recommendation of high-level architecture and strategy to support defined information needs.

• Specific recommendations for short and long term improvements.

• Cost benefits analysis and ROI.

Organizational Assessment

An Organizational Assessment includes an examination of the existing organizational structure and identification of the roles and responsibilities of both IT and the business community that need to be addressed. Organizational readiness for warehousing is examined, including readiness to assume responsibility for ongoing technical and business support, business requirements definition, and front end applications enhancement.

Business Needs Assessment

A Business Needs Assessment includes an analysis of the underlying business drivers and objectives and overall context of business need that has been established for the data warehouse. When business needs have been defined, the assessment process examines the approach to capturing business requirements, their completeness and organization, the priorities of the requirements, and alignment of the data warehouse release strategy and deliverables to the needs.

Information Architecture Assessment

Information Architecture Assessment includes an analysis of logical data structures, their feasibility, completeness, documentation, and fit to business requirements. Information architecture assessment also includes analysis of data sourcing and transformation, the methods and assumptions applied, and validation of mappings to business requirements.

Technical Architecture Assessment

A Technical Architecture Assessment looks at current hardware, software and network infrastructure, and examines physical database designs. Technical architecture assessment seeks to identify any technical risks or constraints with regard to performance, maintenance, scalability, data distribution, disaster recovery, and sizing.

Architecture Approach

A high level technical approach that has been suggested is using SAS 9.2 to automate ETL, OLAP, Reporting, Dashboard and Data mining for client.

Benefits

Deploying SAS Business Intelligence will enable the client to put reporting tools directly into the hands of its end users, ensuring consistent access to information for better decision making. Key benefits from the solution include:

• Reduced daily presentation time – Presentations for the monthly executive meeting are automatically generated, eliminating the technician time so they can spend more time on higher-level tasks.

• Reduced report creation time – Business users can access the reports they need and make changes and updates as needed, reducing the amount of time spent developing reports and requesting data.

• Automation of processes – Proposed ETL and Reporting automation using SAS Data integrator and Reporting studio

• Enhanced visibility – Because standard reports are updated monthly in a dashboard, they can quickly identify trends or problems.

• Improved data accuracy – Because users can access the data directly and automatically update key reports, they can ensure they always have access to the most up-to-date and accurate data.

• Optimized human resources – Because users can develop and customize their own reports, client has been able to significantly grow its reporting capabilities without adding reporting programmers: since the deployment more new reports have been created without IT intervention.

Holland Universities – 3 Tips to Find Top Universities in Holland

Are you curious about Holland Universities? Here are several tips to help you gather more info. Pay attention to them and you can save time and effort exploring what Dutch universities have to offer. In fact, many leading publications cite that universities in Holland are among the top 200 best universities the world over. Getting in any one of them will give you a great edge among your peers when it comes to your international European higher education.Tip 1 – Understand How Employers View The schools.Universities in The Netherlands are very well respected. When your prospective employer sees that you are a graduate of a university in Holland, they will immediately take a positive look at your credentials if it’s one of the top schools such as the University Rotterdam.Of course, being one of the best universities in the world means that the quality of education you have is also one of the best if not the best in the world.

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Tip 2 – Understand What It’s Like for Foreign StudentsPerhaps you’ve heard. Th fact is that the universities located in Holland are known for having a great international study environment. This may be the reason why these universities are popular among those who want to earn a degree in Europe. This can also be attributed to the fact that they are adhering to the policies set by the Bologna Declaration. This declaration which was signed by 29 European Countries’ Ministers of Education aims to make the academic degree standards as well as the quality assurance standards to be more similar and attuned all over Europe.Tip 3 – Investigate The Language RequirementsFor a non native speaker to get into a university in Holland, you need to show your skill in speaking the English language by taking the TOEFL or IELTS. There are scores set that you need to meet to gain entry in any Holland university.

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Non residents are required to secure a student visa for them to be able to study in Holland. Requirements for the application for the student visa must be complied with in order to have a greater percentage of getting that student visa.The bottom line is this. You should take the time to find out more if you are serious about enjoy an educational excursion in this lovely country. Follow these tips and you will be well ahead of the pack.

The Energy Healing Power of Natural Medicine

Natural medicine is a system that uses a variety of therapeutic or preventive health care practices such as homeopathy, naturopathy, chiropractic, and herbal medicine. Alternative medicine is also known as traditional, naturopathic, natural or holistic medicine. Proponents of alternative medicine are not refuting the validity of discoveries in and the practical uses of conventional medicine, but are merely trying to put some things into perspective. Due to the widespread interest in natural medicine along with the disappointment and disenchantment with Western medicine, many people, especially in the United States and Europe, where conventional medicine has taken a dominant foothold, are seeking the advice and treatment from naturopathic physicians. These practitioners include herbalists, acupuncturists, naturopaths, chiropractors, and others, who advocate preventative health measures as well as recommend wholesome foods and nutritional supplements for their patients and clients. Considering the growing popularity and effectiveness of alternative health treatments and products, certified and licensed professional practitioners of such medical practices should be given their rightful and respectful place in medical society. Natural medicine has been proven not only to be safe, but more effective than Western medicine in treating many chronic illnesses such as diabetes, hypertension, asthma and many other diseases as well

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The history of Natural Medicine and its roots can be traced back thousands of years to ancient cultures such as India and China. Ayurvedic (E. Indian) and Chinese medicine, along with their diagnostic and herbal systems, are still used in these countries extensively, as well as in the United States, especially in Europe, where alternative medicine is well respected. Chinese herbal medicine has a documented history of over 2500 years in China, and is now widely used by practitioners all over the world. It has been legally practiced in the United States. since the mid seventies by licensed acupuncturists. Homeopathy is also a well-known form of alternative medicine discovered in the 18th century by German physician Samuel Hahnemann, but was practically stamped out in the U.S. in the late nineteenth century by the American Medical Association. In 1938, though, the U.S. Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act finally recognized homeopathic pharmacopoeia as the legal equivalent of allopathic medicine.Another more contemporary and popular form of herbal medicine, called Western herbalism, can be traced back about two hundred years in America. Samuel Thomson, born in 1769, is considered the father of Western herbalism. He discovered over sixty different medically effective native plants by clinical testing, and on the basis of these findings, devised a theory of disease and botanical drug action. Randy Kidu, D.V.M., Ph.D., writes in his articled entitled A Brief History of Alternative Medicine: “The history of herbal medicine is interesting because herbs have been a part of our diet and pharmacy since man began roaming the earth. Coprophytic evidence (seeds and other plant part(found in preserved fecal pellets) points to herbal use by cavemen. Early herbalists practiced their trade since before recorded history in all parts of the world including China, Egypt, Greece, Rome, Africa, England, the Americas, and Europe. Many herbs are also mentioned in the Bible. Today, based on sheer numbers of folks who use one form of herbal medicine or another, it remains the most-used medicine worldwide.”Twenty-five hundred years after the advent of allopathic medicine, modern medicine is still grappling with the idea that herbal medicine could be an effective treatment, and not just quackery, although thousands of years of recorded history has proved its efficacy. A new model of understanding in medicine needs to be incorporated into the existing allopathic model. Because of the growing popularity and effectiveness of natural medicine, practitioners may eventually be given their deserved place in medical society. The incorporation of natural medical practices into the existing model of conventional Western medicine, including the training of new medical doctors, is now called Complimentary Medicine. In order to solve our health problems, this modern paradigm for treatment in medicine must be promoted. This can only truly emerge when bias, self-interest, greed and discrimination is discarded and diverse medical knowledge is promoted and shared, not only between university trained scientists and medical doctors, but among Alternative Medicine practitioners, philosophers, metaphysicians, and other intelligentsia of society as well.

Skip The Lines – Bring The Amusement Park Right To Your Own Back Yard

There’s no shortage of things to do in Atlanta. From professional sports to amusement parks, there’s something for everyone. In fact, Atlanta is proud to house some of the nations largest amusement attractions, including the ever popular Six Flags Over Georgia. Children (and adults) love the thrill and adrenaline rush of the large roller coasters. However, one thing most people don’t like about amusement parks is the long lines. By the time it’s all said and done, you can spend several hundred dollars for your family to have an afternoon of fun, and only get a few rides in. This year, instead of spending the day waiting in long lines for short rides, why not bring the fun right to your back yard? With today’s technology, you can literally do just that! One of the advantages of living in a large city like Atlanta is that we have large rental companies that can make your special event feel just like a trip to Six Flags… complete with a train and an ice cream cart!

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If you’re trying to replicate the amusement park feel, there are definitely specific items that you’ll want to be on the lookout for. As mentioned previously, ice cream carts and trackless trains help make the special event feel more like a day at Six Flags.In order to make your next special event more special, try some of the following tips:

Head online to do some research on the party rental company that has the selection your looking for. If you want an ice cream cart to complete your theme park adventure, look around until you find what you’re looking for.

Don’t settle for the first website you see. There are literally hundreds of inflatable party rental companies in Atlanta. Keep looking for a website that offers a wide variety of rental items that you’re looking for.

It’s better to rent everything from one company. Renting in bulk can help you save money. Larger companies will offer discounts for larger purchases of multiple units and rental items.

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Having a day of amusement park fun is cheaper and easier than ever before. By bringing the amusement park to your front door by using a party rental industry, you can include more people at a lower price. So next time you’re planning a special day, instead of spending tons of money for just a few people and braving the long lines of amusement parks, invite the whole neighborhood and bring the amusement park right to your own back yard!