One of the largest housing associations in the North East of England, believe housing, has a small data team with big visions for digital transformation. The company’s two developers have bought into the idea of automating their hand-coding methodologies to increase productivity, allowing them to keep on top of business requirements and expand the digital services they offer.
Data Warehouse Manager, Jason Stevens, and BI Developer, Lee Emmerson, use a dimensional modelling methodology on SQL Server and are in the midst of a migration to the Azure cloud. They have data sources coming into the data warehouse from all parts of the company in a variety of formats, from which they must build data marts and produce accurate reports on Power BI.
Having already embarked on a digital transformation journey when the pandemic hit, the added digital requirements forced believe housing to accelerate the plan. They quickly rolled out services such as remote video property viewings and digital contracts to ensure business continuity and were rewarded with second prize in Housing Digital’s top 30 digital housing providers as a result.
However, the scope of the data warehouse project became challenging with requirements building up. The team realised that development would be a significant portion of the work and that they needed to streamline operations to maximize productivity. Lee had used data warehouse automation software before, so started researching a tool to do ‘much of the grunt work’ for them.
After finding WhereScape in an online search, Jason came up with a list of requirements. A 90-minute online demo convinced him that WhereScape ticked all the boxes. One major plus for him was that WhereScape is certified for use on Azure.
Jason’s team has now been using WhereScape RED to automatically generate their SQL code for a month. One of the benefits they’ve found is that while the two of them have very different coding styles, with WhereScape the code is generated in a standardised format so they don’t waste time deciphering each other’s code. Another huge benefit is the automated documentation, which Jason and Lee no longer have to worry about.
WhereScape also enables the team to quickly do development work on-premises, then easily export it to the cloud afterward. This saves them time and money in their cloud migration project.
Jason said: “Wherescape RED is helping us to accelerate our progress by automating the bulk of the coding effort for our data warehouse. The ability to easily migrate our data warehouse to a different platform gives us flexibility whilst maintaining full control of our data and source code. We are able to achieve an approximately fivefold increase in productivity which allows us more time to focus on data quality and design.”