A data warehouse is subject-oriented. Are there any rules to go about defining the subjects? How does one determine a subject area when creating a enterprise model from the ERP Packages? Is it same as the functional modules which comes with the product. P.S. How many subject areas should an organization typically have.
Doug Hackney's Answer: The rule of thumb is that subject areas are what the business wants to talk "about" or the "nouns" of the business, e.g. finance, manufacturing, marketing, sales, HR, legal, shipping, etc. If you are creating an Enterprise Data Mart Architecture (EDMA) for a "bottom up" approach, you will also be defining the "dimensions" of the business at the same time as the subject areas. The dimensions are the "adverbs/adjectives" of the business. They are how the business wants to talk "about" the subject areas. The dimensions represent the ways the business wants to segment and relate the transactions/activities associated with the "nouns" such as time, geography, sales geography, product, customer, division, location, etc.
There are no limits to the number of subject areas or dimensions, and the number is more related to the type of industry/business/segment that the DW/DM system is being built to serve. To give you some idea, a recent transportation client had around 40 subject areas and 30 dimensions.
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