Data Warehousing Project - ETL Design Phase

Data Warehousing > Data Waraehouse Design > ETL

Task Description

The ETL (Extraction, Transformation, Loading) process typically takes the longest to develop, and this can easily take up to 50% of the data warehouse implementation cycle or longer. The reason for this is that it takes time to get the source data, understand the necessary columns, understand the business rules, and understand the logical and physical data models.

Time Requirement

1 - 6 weeks.


  • Data Mapping Document
  • ETL Script / ETL Package in the ETL tool

Possible Pitfalls

There is a tendency to give this particular phase too little development time. This can prove suicidal to the project because end users will usually tolerate less formatting, longer time to run reports, less functionality (slicing and dicing), or fewer delivered reports; one thing that they will not tolerate is wrong information.

A second common problem is that some people make the ETL process more complicated than necessary. In ETL design, the primary goal should be to optimize load speed without sacrificing on quality. This is, however, sometimes not followed. There are cases where the design goal is to cover all possible future uses, whether they are practical or just a figment of someone's imagination. When this happens, ETL performance suffers, and often so does the performance of the entire data warehousing system.

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