Business Intelligence, Analytics and Reporting

The purpose of the Enterprise Project's Business Intelligence, Analytics and Reporting workstream is to ensure the data captured in Workday through newly designed business processes are easy to use and leverage for strategic insights, decisions and actions.

The Business Intelligence, Analytics and Reporting workstream is implementing solutions that allow data analysts to combine and blend disparate datasets in order to perform deep analytics across multiple data domains. Implementing the new tools and processes for reporting and analytics is also very closely tied to the project’s Data Governance workstream.

Data is a Critical Asset

University data is as important to Ohio State’s daily operations and long-term viability as its buildings, roads, capitalized equipment, brand, intellectual property and cash. When we leverage the university’s enterprise data, we see how efficiently we are operating, which areas need corrective action, which new opportunities will deliver the highest returns and the progress the university is making towards its strategic goals.

Workday’s robust reporting environment will take us a long way towards being able to leverage our data quickly and easily for operational decisions at all leadership levels. However, Workday alone is not sufficient to help us to track our progress towards strategic goals, meet all external reporting requirements, explore what-if scenarios or fine-tune our projections and forecasts, which is why a companion Reporting and Analytics Environment is in scope for the Project.

Much of the data that now resides in local data marts distributed across campus will be brought together in Workday and the Reporting & Analytics Environment. Teams in different units who rely on these data for their units’ processes will access them from Workday and the Reporting and Analytics Environment. Historical data from local data marts can be included in RAE.

Business Intelligence, Analytics and Reporting Guiding Principles were developed to help determine BAR workstream activities within the Enterprise Project’s scope, which include:

  • Defining business process data standards that will ensure data quality from the point of data capture to the point of data reporting
  • Building operational, actionable, drillable reports, dashboards and scorecards in Workday and the the Reporting and Analytics Environment (RAE)
  • Providing flexible tools in the Reporting & Analytics Environment to explore data quickly
  • Moving pre-Workday and related data into the Reporting and Analytics Environment for trend analysis and historical reporting
  • Informing the design of post go-live reporting and analytics s ervices and operations

Reporting & Analytics Environment (RAE)

The Reporting and Analytics Environment will be built using data and analysis components within the Amazon Web Services (AWS) platform and will include several components:

Data Lake

One or more large flat files (similar to a spreadsheet) into which approximately 75% of Workday data are copied. The Data Lake serves as the staging area for the Enterprise Data Warehouse and as the data exploration and discovery environment for if/then scenarios, new insights, forecasts, etc. Other university data can be included in the Data Lake.

Enterprise Data Warehouse (EDW)

A series of structured tables that contain approximately 25% of Workday data. Data in the EDW are not in raw form as they are in the Data Lake; they have been refined for specific needs like cross-functional strategic scorecards, dashboards and complex reports. Other university data can be included in the EDW.

Virtualized data interfaces

A series of references or pointers to data that reside in servers/storage on campus. This enables the university to include on premise data in Data Lake analyses and EDW scorecards without having to move the data into the cloud environment.

Data Tools

A robust suite of tools that enable the university to use the data in the Data Lake, the EDW and the virtualized data interfaces. Tools include reporting and visualization (e.g. Tableau), exploration and mining (e.g. R, Hadoop), movement, federated querying, etc.


Business Intelligence, Analytics and Reporting

Successful completion of the activities under this workstream will result in:

  • Complete, consistent and well-defined data, thanks to:
    • Redefined business processes that capture correct and complete data from the start
    • Data/reporting standards that drive reporting consistency and accuracy
    • A broader range of university data being housed Workday
  • Easy and intuitive operational reports and dashboards to run the business (Workday)
  • The ability to answer ad hoc questions with data quickly (Workday and RAE)
  • Mostly automated complex scorecards, reports and dashboards (RAE)
  • Continued access to pre-2020 PeopleSoft data for trend analysis (RAE)
  • The right levels of data access and security in Workday and RAE