The Corporate Information Factory (CIF) is a logical architecture whose purpose is to deliver business intelligence and business management capabilities driven by data provided from business operations. The CIF has proven to be a stable and enduring technical architecture for any size enterprise desiring to build strategic and tactical decision support systems (DSSs). The CIF consists of producers of data and consumers of information. Figure 1 shows all the components found within the Corporate Information Factory architecture.

The producers in the Corporate Information Factory capture the data (integration and transformation) from the operational systems and assemble it (data management) into a usable format (data warehouse or operational data store) for consumption by the business consumers. The CIF consumers acquire the information produced (data delivery), manipulate it (data marts) and assimilate it into their own environments (decision support interface or transaction interface).

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