Cataloging MicroStrategy

Aaron Kalb
Aaron Kalb VP of Design & Strategic Initiatives

Data is not automatically valuable by virtue of merely being available. It becomes valuable only when it positively impacts decision making. Self-service analytics tools have been democratizing data-driven decision making, but also increasing the risk of inaccurate analysis and misinterpretation. A “catalog-first” approach to business intelligence enables both empowerment and accuracy; and Alation has long enabled this combination over Tableau.

Today, we’re announcing that Alation’s 4.6 release seamlessly catalogs MicroStrategy, as well. Many of our customers have been telling us that these two tools in particular form the core of their visual analytics environments. Alation’s deep integration with tools like MicroStrategy and Tableau provides visibility into the complete data pipeline: from storage through visualization.

Just as Google crawls the Web, Alation now automatically crawls MicroStrategy reports and dashboards to create an inventory of data assets, including their metrics and dimensions; we even trace lineage back to source systems. Alation then adds rich behavioral context to this inventory: Just as a consumer catalog like Yelp can indicate the popularity of a particular restaurant, Alation can tell you the popularity of the data underlying a MicroStrategy report or dashboard. Alation does a deep parse of the usage logs on the database tables or Hadoop structures that power a MicroStrategy visualization to capture how often those assets have been used and who in the organization are the experts on that resource. Those experts can then use Alation’s collaborative curation features to further enrich the catalog.

MicroStrategy has long empowered IT to successfully manage proper data use, by allowing administrators with the proper privileges to establish business definitions for metrics such as “revenue”. In creating a single source of truth, MicroStrategy has reduced the risk of error or misinterpretation.

Now with Alation’s automatic cataloging of MicroStrategy reports and dashboards, this top-down data governance framework can be complemented with grassroots cataloging to deliver a modern, balanced approach to data governance—what we call Governance for Insight.

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