Once the dust settles from the panic surrounding the new millennium, enterprises the world over will still be faced with the requirement to provide an easily accessible, integrated, scrubbed source of historical and current data. While data warehousing is becoming an established science and a burgeoning economic segment, it still lacks a clear historical perspective. This lack of perspective prevents practitioners, IT and business management from fully understanding the organizational evolution required for enterprises implementing data warehousing.

Three distinct phases of data warehousing organizations have evolved, each with its own unique distinguishing characteristics. If you have implemented, are in the process of implementing or are planning a data warehousing effort, it is critical to know where you are along the organizational evolutionary path of data warehousing. It is often fatal to let the business cultivate Phase 3 expectations, while you are struggling to deliver Phase 1.

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