Allegient Blog

Can Data Warehouse Development follow an Agile/Scrum SDLC?

Posted by Warren Sifre | February 25, 2015

“A Data Warehouse is not a project, but an evolution that adapts to the ever changing needs of the business.”

If we agree with the statement above then why not Agile/Scrum Software Development Lifecycle (SDLC)?

Many people believe Data Warehouse development cannot follow an Agile/Scrum SDLC. Well, I would suggest it can, given the right team composition and mindset.

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The Unexpected Success of the 2007 Apple iPhone

Posted by Martin J. Wagner | February 20, 2015

This is the second post in a new blog series inspired by Peter Drucker’s book Innovation and Entrepreneurship. To see the previous post, please click here.

In her post last week, Sarah Boswell introduced the Five Principles of Innovation, the key factors to help a person identify innovative ideas. Starting this week, we’ll begin to explore the Seven Sources of Innovation, or the ways to take advantage of innovative opportunities.

Our first source is The Unexpected.  According to Drucker, “The best source for successful innovation is from an unexpected success or failure.  Exploitation of this requires analysis simply because an unexpected success is a symptom.” 

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Taking Advantage of Good Ideas: The 5 Principles of Innovation

Posted by Sarah Boswell | February 13, 2015

Innovation and entrepreneurship are two big words that pack a lot of punch. In Peter Drucker’s book on the subjects, he breaks it down into two simple ideas – defining first where to look for innovation, and then how to take advantage of innovative opportunities.

Over the next several weeks, Martin Wagner and I will explain the “7 sources of innovation” from Drucker’s book, pulling his wisdom off the page and hopefully into a more modern context. We’ll talk about everything from iPhone to Xbox, to Indiana’s sophisticated beer palette and love for microbreweries.

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Process Excellence Highlights from PEXWeek 2015

Posted by Claire Wybrow | February 2, 2015

Recently, I attended PEXWeek 2015, a 3 day event that provides attendees with business tested techniques, tools and ideas to further process excellence within their organizations. Along with Steve Scott of Allison Transmission, I presented one of the first interactive workshops of the week, titled 'Elevating Process Information Management for the Enterprise'. Check out the case study here.

Workshops were what kicked off the week but there was much more to be discovered at PEXWeek! Here are a few of my own highlights from PEXWeek 2015.

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Inside The World of Agile - Agile 101

Posted by Brian O'Neal | January 23, 2015

"To Agile or Not to Agile?". That is the question.  Have you ever wondered or better yet, been confused by exactly what it means when your project manager mentions the fact that his/her projects are "Agile"? Have you ever questioned whether Agile software development truly has quantifiable benefits? Is the Agile trend ultimately leading to the downfall of "Waterfall".  Well, this post will provide you with enough information about the basics of the Agile methodology with a focus on SCRUM, to help you continue your search. 

History of Agile:

The Agile Manifesto was a document written in 2001 by a group seventeen people at a ski resort in Utah.  At this meeting were software development professionals well versed in development methodologies such as SCRUM, Xtreme Programming, Feature Driven Development, and others.  The main goal of this meeting was to come up with an alternative approach to documentation driven, long and heavy software development methodologies. This group named themselves the Agile Alliance and essentially came up with what's referred to as the "Agile Manifesto".  The core of the manifesto states the value of the items on the left over those on the right.

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An Open Apology to Future Maintainers of my Code

Posted by Jim Garlick | January 20, 2015

The other day, I encountered a particularly awful programming situation. I was working through finding a bug in a multi-thousand line program, we’ll call it FinancialCalc. It is full of tricky calculations, database calls, and middleware messages. The original developer had literally copied FinancialCalc, renamed it to something else like FinancialCalcTwo, tweaked a few lines, and then used FinacialCalcTwo from FinacialCalc. This is the same as buying two copies of a novel in order to read it twice. I jumped out of my chair, shuddering as if I was covered with spiders and asked a coworker, “is there a device that reaches back in time and strangles a developer when he makes horrible design choices?” Without missing a beat he replied, “If there was such a thing, we’d all be dead.”

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Going Beyond Collaboration: Top 5 Reasons to Attend PEXWeek 2015

Posted by Claire Wybrow | January 15, 2015

Allegient is excited to be at PEXWeek2015, and I'm thrilled to be leading an interactive workshop on January 19th with Steve Scott, Director of Enterprise Architecture at Allison Transmission. Before diving into the specifics of the event, allow me to introduce myself.

My name is Claire Wybrow, Business Architect for Allegient. I am a trusted advisor to Fortune 500 companies and have been delivering value as a business process management expert for over 20 years. I have worked with a wide range of companies in terms of size (40 000 employees to 20 employees) across multiple industries including pharmaceutical, manufacturing, non-profits, government, financial and insurance.

Currently, I'm leading a Global Automotive Manufacture through the process of adapting, developing and implementing an Enterprise Process Framework (EPF). This EPF, adapted from APQC, SCOR, ITIL and ISO, is approved at an executive level across all areas of the business, with governance and implementation now underway. I am also founding member of the Certification Committee for the Certified Business Process Professional from ABPMP (Associate of Business Process Management Professionals) where I played a key role in developing the examination that is recognized as the International Business Process Professional certification standard. I continue to serve on the Certification Committee that is currently finalizing a new Associate level certification (CBPA). You can read my complete bio on, here.  

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Visio Lessons in a Changing IT Landscape

Posted by Sarah Boswell | January 7, 2015

A few days ago I was watching a tutorial about Visio, a diagramming software, and wondered, “How does Microsoft decide what to update between its major releases, and why?”

I was watching a series on Plural Site, which only has lessons for Visio 2007, and I have Visio 2013 installed on my machine.

I was making some neat diagrams – like a process flow, a company org chart, and a city map of Chicago – and I found that several times, I had to do some Internet research to find certain tools that had been hidden from the 2013 version.

I started to wonder how the Visio team had determined what to show and what to hide. But then I realized, since 2007, business priorities have changed, and the way we interact with technology is always changing. In Visio’s newest version, the most useful tools and templates are presented up-front, and it only takes about 2 minutes to add more tools to the ribbon.

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Portals Are Good For More Than Just Traveling To Other Dimensions

Posted by Jimmy Burkhart | December 17, 2014

When you hear the word Portal what comes to mind?  A many years ago I would have talked about how portals allow people to travel between different dimensions, time travel, or something related to sci-fi.  A portal by definition according to Oxford Dictionary is “a doorway, gate, or other entrance, especially a large and elaborate one.”

Now think of a portal from a technology standpoint.  Throw the word “Web” in front of the word “Portal”.  Now what comes to mind when you think of a web portal?  The definition from Oxford above still applies.  A Web Portal is still a doorway or entrance.  However, a Web Portal is a doorway for other users to access another application or platform’s content without actually logging into said application or platform. 

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Business Intelligence is a Marathon

Posted by Brittany Poore | December 10, 2014

I have a confession to make.  I’m a data geek.  Yes, my professional area of expertise is Business Intelligence so that probably isn’t news, but I also apply it to my personal life.  Whether it’s budgeting, retirement planning, nutrition, fitness, or even my Christmas shopping list, I use data to tell me where I stand and how I can improve.

May 19th, 2014 was a big day in my life.  Not only did I join Allegient, but I also agreed to be part of the 26strong program and commit to running my first full marathon by the end of 2014.  Naturally (for me), I set up a training log so that I could track my progress.  Now seven months later it’s the week of the race, and I’m needing some extra confidence in how prepared I am so I took a look at the data.

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