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Alteryx for the Technology leader


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Introducing a new technology to your business is hard, and of course there are huge considerations that must be taken into account - How well does this fit in with the rest of our technology stack? Is it compliant? How do is this rolled out to the business? Will people actually use it?

With Alteryx it doesn’t need to be hard.

Below we’ve answered some of the largest technology concerns when it comes to implementing Alteryx within your organisation…


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Security

In the first instance business users run Alteryx via a Desktop install whereby it runs on a user’s PC under their user account.

This means that users are only able to access data as currently, usually via IT built extracts, hence there is no additional risk to now.

The first and most valuable step is for users to automate the combination of existing extracts from line of business systems, surfacing data quality issues in source systems that can be resolved and then the workflow rerun for the desired result.

When source database access granted, then an Alteryx workflow can very easily be amended to go straight to source instead of extract - but this step is entirely under the your control.

 

Introducing Alteryx to the Business

Alteryx is typically given to those people in the business that understand their data sources and the steps required to deliver the requirements – they do this already in applications such as Excel.

Alteryx is not a universal tool, in much the same way that you wouldn’t wish all business users to build their own reporting spreadsheets.

 The best way to introduce Alteryx to data users is for our certified consultants to guide them through replicating their own manual Excel processes, where they would blend extracts from different systems to produce the required output. 
They know what is the right answer, and so can reconcile against the current Excel results using Alteryx.

In our experience this guided approach quickly reveals errors in the current manual process.

This demonstrates Alteryx’s value in allowing business users to reliably translate business data into the correct outcome without needing to express this in either formal specification or technical terms, which would typically change requiring significant PMO and IT effort.

As per Security, there is no impact on IT until access to source systems is agreed and granted, but the business can in the mean-time automate the process using the data that they have access to, saving valuable time in the process.

 

IT and Continuum Support Requirement

Our clients (30+ internationally and counting) are generally self-sufficient, and rightly proud of the fact.

Alteryx is focused on resolving “hidden” IT issues whereby the business are currently managing processes via Excel without necessarily understanding the effect of data quality issues.

New requirements will often be delivered and verified in Alteryx without requiring input from IT Support.

Actually, we would prefer to have more feedback from our clients so that we can offer free advice based on our experience to increase efficiency and skills.

The key area where our users require assistance is in connecting to data sources, but this is generally discovered and resolved in something such as a user’s training day.

“New” sources are generally variations of an existing connection (copy/paste/edit), and users within the Alteryx cohort typically share expertise within the group. 
An Alteryx Server allows more efficient sharing of proved workflows, but this typically arises several months into a client’s use of Alteryx when a number of production workflows have been built.

 

System Migrations

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The key business problem with systems migrations, as when a firm needs to integrate a new acquisition, is that the migration needs to be rerun multiple times.

With traditional tools the “middle ware” spreadsheets are typically maintained in parallel with the source system due to mapping issues - this is easily automated with Alteryx.

 

Briefly, the testing process is as follows for moving data from System A to System B…

  1. Clear in scope data from System B

  2. Extract data from System A, or read new copies of existing extracts, as per security policies

  3. Apply mappings to prepare System A data to be imported into System B, reporting out of range values

  4. Import modified System A data into System B either via API or import

  5. Extract in scope data from System B

  6. Use Alteryx to reconcile modified A data vs B - this is done both record by record, and then field by field

During a parallel run one repeats the above whilst omitting steps 1 and 4 to verify the import and, most importantly, that System B functionality is as specified.

 

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Vendor Collaboration

We are committed to working with local source and reporting system vendors to make reporting as easy as possible for our mutual clients.

Where clients have Alteryx it will allow automation of population of the company/director templates from source systems, and validation of the values provided prior to reporting to the Regulators.

 

Continuum Engagement

We offer all levels of engagement from enablement training to full implementation of requirements.

As a hybrid example, at one of our Jersey Fund Administration clients we perform a “gatekeeper” role whereby we take workflows built by the business for local use and productionise them to Alteryx Server for Group wide use.


Introduction to Alteryx Designer…


2.) Prep and blend the right data

Create the right dataset for analysis or visualisation using data quality, integration, and transformation tools.

4.) Make the most of spatial or location data

Blend and output spatial data files then easily join it with 3rd party data such as demographics.

1.) Access all your relevant data

Connect to and cleanse data from data warehouses, cloud applications, spreadsheets and other sources.

3.) Get data ready for predictive analytics

Accelerate the processes of creating predictive analytics with specifically designed tools.


At continuum, we specialise in the adoption, implementation and

support of alteryx within businesses across a broad array of

sectors.

Reach out to Continuum to hear how we can help your business unlock your data's potential with…

  • Alteryx installation and setup

  • Free Alteryx Trial Licenses

  • Proof of concept workshops and exercises

  • User training and enablement

  • Professional Consultancy