Data-Analytics for Everyone

Recently I got confronted with the question how one could enable as many people as possible in an organisation by giving them access to data analytics.

The client was using mongoDB. My immediate response was “let’s use the built-in Aggregation Framework” — our client said, cool, let’s do this.

I must admit I fancy the Aggregation Framework a lot and have given quite some talks about it around the globe now. So I asked our client what he was looking for and came up with some aggreations that made our client smile.

Then my client asked “What about my data scientist? I guess they can get even more insights exploring the data by themselves.

Hm, guess I was seeing everything too much through my DBA eyes at the beginning, but no problem: We gave the data scientists access to the data, MongoDB comes with role-based access control anyway. I gave the data scientists a crash course how to access the data via the Jupyter notebooks and pymongo. It was a piece of cake — I’m familiar with one of their main tools — Pandas — anyway.

Then my client asked “Thanks — that great, but we also have datasets which don’t neccesarily require the skills of a data scientists to anylse — is there a way my analysts can get insight into the data as well?

Of course” I responded — let’s visualize the data! So we build some nice visualisations with the free and open-source Bokeh.

Case solved — not really. “Do I aways need to call you if my analysts need something new — isn’t there another way?” our client asked. Our philophy is to enable our clients not to make them dependend on us, so no problem.

This time I got lucky since MongoDB just had released the BI Connector. The BI connector lets one connect MongoDB databases with tools like Tableau. Once the connector is set up employees can access the data in an SQL fashion — basically anyone being able to deal with analytics in Excel can build impressive visualisations at ease.

Case solved — happy client… and I can focus on the tricky stuff only. Yes, I do like new challenges ;)

I’ll be speaking about MongoDB, aggreation, visualization and the BI connector at MongoDB World, New York in June.

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