Blueprint created a proprietary data gathering tool that worked in tandem with existing legacy databases, instead of forcing more than 800 franchises to replace the applications they had in place.
This staffing company had two applications that formed the backbone of its data strategy. The first was a web application for field franchisees that created a stand-alone database for each of the more than 800 franchises, fragmenting field reporting and making it impossible for the company to manage or aggregate data. The second was an antiquated ERP system that relied on a legacy mainframe and was architected to record transactions, not for analytics, making reporting and data analytics difficult. The lack of integration between the datasets and inability to aggregate and analyze different dimensions of the data prevented the company from deriving the insights necessary to make timely business decisions and capitalizing on the value of their data.
“As you can imagine, having more than 800 versions of the same thing makes it really hard to do reporting,” said Director of Solution Development Eric Vogelpohl.
The Blueprint Way
To unlock the data located in the hundreds of disparate databases for reporting and analysis, Blueprint deployed a proprietary data migration tool that runs hourly, pulling data from all of the more than 800 franchisee databases and adding it to a Data Lake. The tool then utilizes Azure Databricks to both merge all change data and perform the union function to flatten it. The data is then migrated to a unified SQL database for reporting and analytical purposes.
The same tool was used to migrate data from the legacy ERP system into the Data Lake and prepare it for data analytics. Again, utilizing Azure Databricks, the data was then transformed and loaded into a reporting mart, making it accessible for reporting and business intelligence for the first time.
With all the data from these two key business applications aggregated in the Data Lake and available for reporting, the company for the first time has a holistic view of their business at all levels. Franchise-level reporting and regional franchise performance analysis are enabled, allowing for greater insights as well as opportunity recognition. In addition to the insights provided by new reporting functions, business leaders can now begin to unlock the power and value of their data, encompassing possibilities as varied as forecasting and identifying business opportunities and new revenue streams.