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Real time information integration
 

103 Chambers of Commerce migrate to Pentaho Business Analytics for market intelligence and efficient administration

The Customer

INFOCAMERE is the IT consortium of Italian Chambers of Commerce. It develops and manages the data transmission system at the national level by linking the 105 chambers of commerce and their 300 branches through an efficient and safe network.

Through its technology, innovation and services ongoing commitment, Infocamere seeks to strengthen the role of chambers of commerce to become the driving force of the local economy, making possible a better collaboration between the public administration and the companies dealing with them.

The Italian Chambers of Commerce play a key role in providing administrative support to companies in each sector. An example: help new start up businesses and maintain their presence in the register of Italian companies. Data from the register of companies are very useful for forecasting economic trends at local and regional level; an example is the analysis of the number of new businesses in the area, it might be relevant to an economic growth, or vice versa.

The real time analysis of these data allows the Chambers and the regional administration to be prepared for both scenarios: growth and recession.

Key objectives

Infocamere used BI locally and globally applications. Globally, Infocamere uses a system called StockView to analyze and monitor the data coming from the commercial register.

The system aggregates every quarter data from all the Chambers and publish a report that compares that data with those of previous quarters and with the same period last year data.
Infocamere locally developed BI applications for each Chamber detailing each transaction made by companies related to it just using operational data.

Infocamere built the first BI applications with proprietary software, but from 2008 began an evaluation process to find the right most modern open source technology, including in the selction process Jaspersoft, Penntaho and SpagoBI. The Infocamere evaluation criteria included integration capabilities, speed, ease of use (interface), ad hoc reporting and OLAP functionality. On these requirements Pentaho was selected as the best solution.

The solution

In March 2009 Infocamere began a gradual migration to the Pentaho Business Analytics Enterprise Edition, using data integration, analysis and reporting functionality. Earlier local applications of BI have been moved on Pentaho and the personeel trained. Once this first step has been successfully completed, the entire application Stockview was moved on Pentaho without neglecting the training of dedicated staff.

An Open Source environment - Infocamere uses a completely open source based system on two dual core server, Red Hat Linux, JBoss cluster depolyed and a MySQL database to support Pentaho Business Analytics.

For consultancy and professional support - Infocamere is working with BNova Consulting SrL, wich is a Pentaho premium partner that provides technical support and high level training.

 

Key results

  • Confidence in Pentaho capability to handle huge and complex sets / amount of data - StockView data amount is about 650 GB, accumulated over the past decade and set to grow to 130 GB per year. Data analysis covers 17 periods in a year (month, quarter, year) involving 68 fact tables, each with about 5.5 million records and a total of 873 aggregate tables for years. Infocamere runs 16 different queries types of on this data, each analysis has about 14 dimensions and very complex hierarchies.

  • Efficient and appropriate local business communities support - each chamber of commerce can run their own reports on operational data whenever they need it, both in ad hoc, either the insitutional ones, at daily, weekly, monthly detail level. The StockView reports are executed on a quarterly basis. This allows the chambers of commerce to have a clear view of the domestic economy of the region, to provide better local support.

  • Creation of self-sufficient end-user - more than 500 people, many of which are IT, have been trained on the system and can use it regularly. Multiple profiles has been defined within each Chamber of Commerce. "The characteristics of our reporting and analysis are very complex from the data point of view, but thanks to Pentaho interface, simple to use, the Chambers of Commerce may be self-sufficient in the report generation, and in line with individual needs" said the Infocamere project manager.

Summary

INFOCAMERE, uses Pentaho to have a clear view of the regions domestic economy, allowing better local support both during times of crisis, and during periods of growth.

With Pentaho Business Analytics, Infocamere is able to analyze the data from the register of companies and to forecast the local and regional level economic trends, via the analysis of the opening and closing businesses in the Regions.

Having the ability to access and analyze easily and in real time over 500 GB of data from the last 10 years, allows the chambers of commerce and regional administrations to be adequately prepared for the moments of growth and crisis.

To date 500 chambers of commerce people are using Pentaho for reports and analysis.
Business users especially appreciate the ease of use and fast performance, while the IT department users appreciates the support, technology, scalability, integration capabilities and OLAP.