You don't use a scale ruler or a distance meter. You don't build or renovate buildings. But you're an architect nonetheless. A business intelligence (BI) architect.
As a BI architect, you analyze data models. You optimize data structures, one data value at a time. You investigate and implement business intelligence for your entire organization. You are one of the most important people in data management.
Table of Contents
- What are the Skills of a Business Intelligence Architect?
- A BI Architect Communicates
- A BI Architect Solves Problems
- A Business Intelligence Architect Has Extensive Experience With Dashboards
- A BI Architect Knows ETL Inside-Out
- A Business Intelligence Architect Provides Much-Needed Guidance
- A BI Architect Has Excellent Attention to Detail
- How Does Xplenty Make You a Better BI Architect?
What are the Skills of a Business Intelligence Architect?
As a BI architect, you wear many hats:
- You determine platforms, processes, and procedures for the central data warehouse.
- You use data components and information management systems.
- You apply technology that turns complicated data into useful information.
A BI architect earns, on average, $112,000 and probably studied computer science, engineering, math, or another related field. Most BI architects used to work as data architects, BI developers, or BI managers.
On a typical day, you plan a large complex data system and decide what data to store, archive, and delete. You formulate strategies and determine what data drives business decision-making. And you do all of this before lunch.
Of course, you don't do it alone. A successful BI architect works with a talented team of:
- Data architects
- Data scientists
- Project managers
- Business intelligence teams
- Data quality management teams
A regular architect uses marker pens and graph paper. As a BI architect, you need your software. You can't succeed without it. But not any software will do. It needs to be safe, fast, reliable. It needs to collect, store, and analyze business intelligence data. (Preferably with lots of visualizations!) It needs to present this data clearly and accurately.
Good software is a BI architect's architecture.
Successful BI software programs let you:
- Track performance
- Optimize processes
- Identify revenue opportunities
- Make smarter decisions
A BI Architect Communicates
A BI architect supports and maintains the entire business intelligence backend, including data warehouses. While this seems like a computer-based role, it's not. You spend lots of time away from your desk brainstorming with other members of your team and walking into other departments. All of this requires excellent communication skills.
A BI architect is a communicator. Plain and simple. You need to articulate complicated BI concepts to data architects, scientists, and analysts in a language everyone understands. (And no, not SQL!)
A successful BI architect also communicates concepts to end-users: Managers, clients, and potential investors who don't know (and may not care about) the differences between a data lake and a data warehouse or Azure SQL Database and Redshift.
BI architects develop communication skills on their own. Few classes teach you how to communicate effectively. You' learn on the job.
Pro-Tip: Xplenty's scalable platform lets BI architects move/transform data across various data stores (MySQL database to PostgreSQL database, for example) for better collaboration and communication among teams.
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A BI Architect Solves Problems
At times, business intelligence seems like a New York Times crossword puzzle. As a BI architect, you don't decipher cryptic clues but increasingly complicated data sets that pose head-scratching challenges. These challenges include:
- Changes in IT structures
- Glitches in programs and applications
- Preserving/creating systems for data use
- Dealing with data warehouse, database storage, and other IT infrastructure issues
- Creating/handling metadata so users can access data more efficiently
- Using marketing (Google Adwords, Facebook, Twitter, etc) and sales data to the find best-performing channels
Pro-Tip: Xplenty helps BI architects centralize data from all data stores into a data warehouse and connect the warehouse to a BI tool like Looker or Tableau. Read more.
A Business Intelligence Architect Has Extensive Experience With Dashboards
Dashboards are the foundation of business intelligence. Research from Zippia suggests that dashboard experience is one of the most common skills for in-demand BI architects, and it appears on 5.7 percent of all resumes.
Dashboard experience goes far beyond the interpretation of analytics. As a BI architect, you::
- Design/develop solutions for dashboards
- Create automated dashboards that showcase demographics, campaign results, statistics, account histories, inventories, and other essential BI information
- Implement dashboards into mobile environments
- Develop multiple views and integrate them into dashboards
You' present your dashboard findings to other members of your team, senior management, clients, customers, and potential investors, using a combination of predictive analytics and real-time reporting for accurate data-driven intelligence.
A BI Architect Knows ETL Inside-Out
Perhaps nobody knows ETL better than a BI architect, who designs and implements ETL solutions for multiple environments. ETL experience is such an in-demand skill, it shows up on 4.9 percent of BI architects' resumes, appearing more frequently than SQL, web intelligence, and SSIS.
As a BI architect, you use ETL to:
- Design solutions for aggregated facts using metadata
- Create processes for MUD-Dev
- Manage high volumes of data at one time
- Optimize data modeling and database solutions
Pro-Tip: The right digital tools and infrastructure strengthen the ETL process. Xplenty's ETL/ELT software provides BI architects with a competitive advantage. It expedites data processing and lets architects focus on insights (and avoid inaction.) Learn more here.
Integrate Your Data Today!
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Recommended Reading: Is ETL Still Relevant?
A Business Intelligence Architect Provides Much-Needed Guidance
A BI architect's roles and responsibilities never end. Work rarely stops at 5 p.m. Weekends aren't weekends. The BI architect implements skills and technologies at all times. You are the captain of the ship. Your team depends on you.
You might use your skills outside of work. You might be a consultant in your spare time. Or train new hires. If so, you juggle these responsibilities while developing scalable BI applications that meet business objectives.
Some of your responsibilities include:
- Creating data security/authentication standards for your business
- Supporting BI tools in testing and documentation
- Diagnosing capacity issues
- Experimenting with new data reporting tools/technologies
Recommended Reading: How to Build an Effective ETL for BI Strategy
A BI Architect Has Excellent Attention to Detail
Razor-sharp focus. 20/20 vision. Eyes like a hawk. A BI architect is incredibly detail-orientated. You are precise, organized, and always productive. And you are always prepared for the worst-case scenario. It's easy to make mistakes when dealing with so much data. And one simple mistake can be costly. This is why you pay close attention to the smallest fragments of information. Even the tiniest "particle" of data could be an actionable, profitable insight.
In this new blog post, we outline our favorite business intelligence solutions: what makes them unique, how users feel about them, and why you should try them.https://t.co/m3s6GPpFfp pic.twitter.com/FApzMqgddw— Xplenty (@xplenty) August 16, 2019
How Does Xplenty Make You a Better BI Architect?
The skills of a business intelligence architect are diverse and include technical talents and people management experience. From the moment you clock in at work, you communicate, fix problems, work with dashboards, solve ETL challenges, provide guidance, and more.
If you want to become a better BI architect, you can't do it without good software.
Xplenty's simplified data integration platform provides BI architects with a suite of tools that make life easier. There's no coding. No deployment. Just immediate results. Click here to get your 7-day demo.