Data professionals often perform time-consuming manual tasks for data projects. Data teams that eliminate these tasks through automation can gain significant boosts in efficiency and productivity. For data teams, automation can be the difference between a ten hour project and a five minute project.

 

In our recent eBook – 5 Data Integration Projects You Can Automate Right Now – we outline some core data projects teams can automate. These are quick win, big-impact examples that teams can implement immediately.

 

Here’s an excerpt from the eBook!

 

API Integration

 

Many teams rely on a wide variety of data sources, whether that’s Facebook, Salesforce, NetSuite or countless others. To provide holistic business insights, these data sources must be aggregated into a single repository, such as a cloud data warehouse.

 

However, in order to perform aggregation, the data warehouse must provide a data connector for each individual data source. There is no “one-size-fits-all” data connector. Each data connector is designed to match a specific API.

 

This gives teams two options for API integration: building data connectors, or leveraging pre-built data connectors. Each option offers its own pros and cons.

The benefits of building data connectors mostly revolve around the company owning the entirety of the code. This makes it easier to customize a connector. But the method comes with downsides.

 

Developer resources, already scarce in most companies, are required to build API data connectors. The connectors take a significant amount of time to develop, and they do not automatically update for new API versions. There are no support channels to answer questions or concerns. And headcount in departments, such as data engineering, may increase to support data connector projects.

Pre-built data connectors, on the other hand, eliminate the building phase altogether. With plug-and-play functionality, pre-built data connectors automate the API integration process. Pre-built API connectors link to data sources immediately. The dev team can focus on more important projects, and no new hires are necessary. All API updates are automatic. Support channels are available.

 

Pre-built data connectors are usually licensed by data integration platforms. Some platforms charge per connector, while others only charge for the data used. Pre-built connectors offer significant advantages to teams that need to automate API integration. But teams who need total control over the connector’s source code should consider self-building.

 

Data Syncs

 

Oftentimes, a company’s on-premise database collects data such as items sold, daily revenue, and other localized metrics, while the cloud data warehouse combines data from all the company’s internal and external sources. To stay aligned with each other, the on-premise and cloud databases must perform some kind of data sync.

 

Data syncs ensure that databases are congruent, enabling up-to-date datasets and more incisive business intelligence. While data sync methods such as scheduling remain popular, change data capture (CDC) is the only solution that automates the entire process.

 

Before change data capture, database migrations relied on bulk reading and batch processing. Data syncs were not automated or instantaneous. Teams were bogged down in manual source configuration. These factors made data integration more difficult.

 

Change data capture eliminated all of that. CDC automatically and instantly syncs a database with a cloud data warehouse by using real-time streaming. The syncing method detects data changes as they happen, and immediately pushes these changes into the target data warehouse.

With CDC, data is always identical. The source database and cloud data warehouse are continuously synced. No database resources are ever wasted. Database logs are scanned to track changes, adding no additional SQL loads to the system. Bulk selecting is a thing of the past. Only the modified data is synced with the cloud DWH. All other data remains static.

 

For a variety of data projects, CDC’s automation is a game-changer. The feature is especially useful for backing up operational databases in a cloud data warehouse, high frequency database syncs, combining marketing and internal data within a data warehouse, or any project that requires auto-syncs.

 

Download the Free eBook!

 

For data teams who hope to remain competitive, automation is a key component of success. But the data integration projects in this blog are just the beginning. There’s a whole range of projects that teams can automate today. Download our free eBook –  5 Data Integration Projects You Can Automate Right Now – to learn how else your team can boost efficiency and productivity through automation.