Category: Business Intelligence

Managing self-service BI teams

April 2, 2019

  By Katrina Pilcher, RM and Mythili Baker, Head of Innovation     Growth in the adoption of self-service BI tools and increasing data literacy across organisations is leading to an increase in the number of individuals across the business who want to and who have access to be able to perform their own analytics.

The Difference Between DevOps and DataOps

January 30, 2019

Samuel Ward-Riggs – Managing Consultant, London First DevOps, now DataOps (and ArchOps, DevSecOps, and WinOps!?).  You would be forgiven for thinking that the tech hipsters have started a campaign of random capitalization, emulating their favourite i-products and the eXPeriments carried out at the turn of the ME-llennium.  But make no mistake: DevOps is a step-change in

Greater control of your Power BI Datasets with the Power BI REST API

December 6, 2018

Sam Turner, Consultant, Altis Sydney   The Power BI REST API allows users to programmatically control their datasets in the Power BI service. This includes triggering a refresh of a dataset, monitor the status of a currently refreshing dataset, or view the refresh history of a dataset. As will be demonstrated, the use of this API

“Soft Skills” vs “Technical” problem solving. Whats the difference?

October 12, 2018

Neil Sparrow, Managing Consultant, Altis London When I started my career as a technical guy I firmly believed that “problem solving” in the realms of “technical” i.e implementing a specific system vs  “soft skills” such as business analysis were worlds apart. Over the last decade, working in mixed projects covering both aspects, I have changed my

Altis Lunch & Learn Series: Snowflake is SNOWBALLING!!!

September 28, 2018

Richard Roose, Principal Consultant from our Sydney office, recently attended a Lunch & Learn session hosted by Altis where Snowflake presented their disruptive technology offering. Richard shares his 4 key takeaways below. Separate Storage & Compute: The 1st piece of the puzzle was to separate storage from compute. This simple concept created a number of distinct advantages.

Pushing the Boundaries

September 24, 2018

Sean Ryan, Senior Consultant, Sydney Overview of Spatial Capabilities in PowerBI: It has only been in the last 5-10 years that mapping capabilities have made a transition from specialised GIS (Geographic Information Software) software into mainstream tools that are being utilised by a far wider audience across organisations that never had a dedicated spatial team

Three great projects developed in 46 hours for GovHack 2018

September 14, 2018

Our Canberra and Sydney teams recently participated in GovHack 2018. In Canberra, the teams developed Communities Skin Health – A mobile application that identifies skin conditions Insolvencies Fact or Spin – A model that predicts personal insolvency using a deep learning algorithm In Sydney, the team developed ‘Beat the Heat’  – a dashboard to communicate

Learn the art of Storytelling with Data

September 6, 2018

Learn the art of Storytelling with Data, presented by Amazon best selling author, Cole Nussbaumer Knaflic. For the first time in Auckland, Sydney & Melbourne, Cole will be delivering her training. This 1-day workshop will enable you to bring data to life and use it to communicate a story to an audience, with a focus

Azure Data Factory Templates with Data Lake

August 16, 2018

Altis have been working on a number of projects to assist our customers move their data and analytics workloads to the Azure Cloud.  In this blog, James Mitchell from our Canberra office shares some project details and insights into one of these successful projects, where we established a new data warehouse environment in Microsoft Azure

Project, programme, portfolio management, data and the possibilities

August 1, 2018

Ian Stuart from our London office, has again been featured on the APM website, outlining the outcomes from his latest webinar. I recently presented at an APM webinar entitled “Taking portfolio benefits management to the next level with modern analytics”. The feedback was very positive – see some of the comments below: It would seem, from this

Powering modern analytics with Power Bi

July 27, 2018

By Khai Tan, Managing Consultant Altis recently assisted  BAI Communications (BAI) in Australia with the implementation of their new Reporting and Analytics Platform. On the new platform, we delivered their first Power BI dashboard to monitor Digital Television (DTV) service performance at all Broadcast Australia (a BAI communications company) tower sites. Information is presented using ArcGIS maps

Portfolio benefits management and modern analytics

July 12, 2018

Creating value out of data is one of the highest priorities in business across all industries and services in the private and public sectors alike.  Ian Stuart of our London office gives an overview in a blog and webinar he recently presented for the Association for Project Management . Current state Data and analytics is a

Fast Track Your Azure Data Factory v2 ETL Development

July 5, 2018

By Dawie Kruger, Azure Practice Lead, Australia   In my previous blog Using SSIS within Azure Data Factory v2, we looked at using the Azure Data Factory SSIS Runtime and how the Altis ETL Jumpstart Kit was easily ported to run in the new environment. In this blog I will take you through some new

Making the most of your smart meters from day 1

June 28, 2018

Altis partners with a number of water utilities across Australia, deploying a range of data and analytics solutions to reduce costs, improve decision making and expedite corporate & regulatory reporting. A growing trend that we are seeing is the implementation of smart metering trials, pilots, rollouts or at least planning for these implementations. Smart meters are an

How to better understand the socio-economic information of your students

May 2, 2018

How to Incorporate GeoMap: Use Case 2 – University Students GeoMap is a newly introduced address verification tool allowing individuals, companies and institutes to better take control of their addresses. But GeoMap is more than just a simple verification tool. Through GeoMap’s capabilities, our clients can geocode, validate and gain socio-economic insights into any physical

How to easily get socio-economic data for an address

April 19, 2018

How to Incorporate GeoMap: Use case 1 – Application Assessment Improving application processing through easy-to-use, efficient geocoding. GeoMap is a newly established Australian address verification tool that allows for geocoding and socio-economic insight into all Australian addresses. Over a three part series we will explore the  ways in which businesses and institutes can incorporate GeoMap

Image Classification

April 10, 2018

Paul Butera, Altis Data Scientist, Melbourne In the space of image classification, not much has changed for years. Up until recently, even utilising deep learning, the pinnacle of multiclass object detection remained, at most, detecting one or two different kinds of objects within a single frame. Put more simply, we have been able to train

Using Machine Learning and ElasticSearch to discover unstructured Gold

March 13, 2018

Mythili Baker, Head of Innovation Our client, a large distributor of electricity and gas, had a wide range of responsibilities and tasks managed via their call centre. Their call centre data repository was vast and contained a high volume of rich unstructured text. They hypothesis was that this data contained valuable insights that they were

HR reporting made easy

March 1, 2018

Having recently completed several HR reporting projects in Canberra, we believe there are still a number of agencies that are struggling to deliver timely insights into their workforce. The path that some agencies have been taking in order to produce HR reporting goes like this: Teams initially try to use the HR system for reporting.

Depression and Anxiety Treatment in England: Does the level of care depend on where you live?

February 15, 2018

by Olu Omodara “Mental health has never had a higher profile. More than ever before, people are being encouraged to talk openly about their mental health and to share their experiences. More people than ever are receiving treatment and care for mental health conditions; in part due to a reduction in the stigma associated with

AI: 3 weeks and you are improving your organisation

February 8, 2018

To compete and grow sustainable advantage, organisations need trustworthy insight derived from data. The challenge is how to do this quickly and effectively, especially with every vendor claiming they have the “Silver Bullet.” 3 weeks to an outcome If you work for a company or department that lacks trained and experienced Data Scientists, then your

Using SSIS within Azure Data Factory V2  

January 30, 2018

Dawie Kruger recently led a data warehousing project, that was implemented using all Azure PaaS components. Azure Data Factory version 2 was used to transform data from the on-premises data sources into to Azure SQL DB, and in this blog Dawie reviews the new SSIS functionality in Azure Data Factory.  Overview  SQL Server Integration Services (SSIS) has been the ETL tool provided with SQL Server

AWS re:invent 2017 – Data and Analytics Announcements.  

December 6, 2017

Every year, we take a look at the avalanche of announcements made at AWS re:invent and explore the possibilities offered by new Big Data and Analytics products and services.   Following the trend from last year, the focus has been put on the Data and Analytics stack, especially in the Artificial Intelligence and the Machine Learning spaces. But first, before we take a look

Credit Controllers are Data Analysts too

November 27, 2017

Ian Stuart from our London office, has recently had an article published in the Credit Control Journal, one of the world’s leading research journals dedicated to the advancement of asset risk management, credit analysis and corporate risk. Credit Controllers are data analysts too, explains Ian. Yet, most organisations fail to realise the role that Business

Watson Conversation Part 3: Further Tips & Tricks

November 21, 2017

By Jeremiah Mannings This is a short article following on from the previous parts relating to intent, entity, and dialog design, check those out if this is the first you are reading! The links are below. This article covers some quick tips and tricks that will help you get started alongside the previous articles in

What we can do with data

November 15, 2017

In a follow up to his previous article, analysing BHPA (British Hang Gliding and Paragliding Association) incidents, Ian Stuart from our London office had another article published in Skywings this month, showing the possibilities that are opened up with good electronic flight logging.  His personal flight logging dashboard is insightful and has attracted very positive

Using Account Intelligence to streamline your Financial Reporting

November 14, 2017

by Garry Farrell, Sydney Consultant   On the surface financial reporting may look simple. However, have you ever tried to create a profit and loss statement or balance sheet using a hierarchy? Typically these reports are built in Excel or other reporting tools, where a complex design is required to get the layout and calculations correct.

Why Data Visualisation is Great for your Business

November 8, 2017

By Olu Omodara – Altis London office At its essence, data visualisation is the effort to render data in an accessible, visual, consumable format. This understanding is key to ensuring that your data visualisation strategy contributes to and has the correct impact on your business. Most likely, as an organisation, you are collecting swathes of

Part 2: Watson Conversation Entity & Dialog Design

November 1, 2017

The second in a 3 part blog series by Melbourne consultant Jeremiah Mannings  Introduction This is the second part in a series of Watson Conversation API articles that aims to cover the design and development of a finance-based chatbot. To check out the first article here! In this part of the series, we are going to

Watson Conversation WCS Intent design

October 19, 2017

By Jeremiah Mannings Consultant in Melbourne Introduction This series of articles is designed to offer a useful overview of the capabilities and functions of the Watson Conversational API to use in your own projects. For the next few articles, a banking/finance type demo will be used to explain the concepts. There will be a number

Effort and BI – Is the Focus Shifting?

October 10, 2017

Neil Randall, a consultant in our London office, shares his thoughts on how technology is shifting the focus in the way data warehouse and BI solutions are being delivered. Platforms such as Microsoft Azure and Amazons’ AWS offering may well be on the way to shifting the balance of where we put our time and

Spark on Windows 10

September 6, 2017

The third in a series of blogs from Anandraj Jagadeesan, talks us through downloading Apache Spark on Windows 10, using the new Ubuntu environment. About Spark Apache Spark is a fast and general-purpose cluster computing system. It provides high-level APIs in Java, Scala, Python and R, and an optimized engine that supports general execution graphs. It

TDWI Conference 2017

August 23, 2017

Earlier this month, Richard Roose, one of our senior Sydney consultants, attended the TDWI conference in Anaheim. He gives us a recap of the main topics below. As you might expect, a broad spectrum of topics were covered, with some of the hotter ones being around: Self-service BI & Analytics Data Science & Advanced Analytics

Installing Docker on Ubuntu Bash for Windows

July 26, 2017

Following on from his last blog, Anandraj Jagadeesan from our Sydney office, provides steps to install Docker on Ubuntu Bash for Windows. Background Docker’s ability to provide applications with resource isolation, portability, consistency and support continuous integration & testing makes it a very attractive tool for every software engineer. With Docker, one can run the

Big data on AWS – a project success story

July 21, 2017

An Altis project team in Sydney went live this week, with a new big data solution on AWS for a family restaurant chain with over 900 locations across Australia. What made this a big data project and a success? Typically big data is described in terms of the 3 Vs – velocity, volume and variety.

Installing Ubuntu Bash for Windows 10

July 6, 2017

Anandraj Jagadeesan, a Managing Consultant with Altis in Sydney, shares his experience of installing Ubuntu Bash in a Windows 10 environment. For the last few years as a big data developer I have been using a Mac at work and a Linux desktop for my personal needs. I recently started using a Windows laptop at

Big Data Navigational Aids

June 22, 2017

Altis’ CEO, John Hoffman, shares some insights into how to successfully navigate the Big Data landscape. I am sure many of you flinched when you first saw this graphic on the Big Data landscape when it was published by Matt Turk in April. For those of you who missed it, have a look and weep.

Who owns your data strategy?

May 25, 2017

Our UK Country Manager, Peter Hopwood, was recently interviewed for an article “Who owns your data strategy and how do you define it effectively” written by Michael Gilmour from Michael Page Technology. Here is what Peter had to say in the article: Peter Hopwood, Altis Consulting UK Regional Manager, has been working in BI for

The Truth about Paragliding and Hang Gliding Incidents

May 18, 2017

Ian Stuart, one of our London based consultants, used the BHPA’s incident database to reveal some interesting insights. Free flying is exhilarating but it comes with a health warning.  We recently published our analysis of incidents in “Skywings” – the membership magazine for the British Hang Gliding & Paragliding Association (BHPA).  We looked at some

AWS Summit: moving up the stack and technology convergence

April 11, 2017

Our AWS Practice Lead Guillaume Jaudouin attended the latest AWS Sydney Summit last week. Read on to hear Guillaume’s key takeaways from this event. As is becoming usual, the AWS Sydney Summit was packed (6,000+ attendees), loud and intense. The keynote line up was impressive and the summit was the place to be for anyone

How do you measure progress in your data and analytics journeys?

March 20, 2017

Altis have been helping our clients advance their data journeys towards making better use of information to drive efficiencies, profitability and other tangible outcomes for 19 years. We’ve seen how measuring current state and revisiting maturity assessments over time help an organisation prioritise and achieve their future visions. That’s why we’re excited to launch our

Our experiment with Sentiment Analysis on Yammer

March 16, 2017

Big data is pervasive today but many organisations are still struggling to understand where it fits into their technology and business landscape and to define a suitable use case to get started with Big Data. At Altis, we’ve been exploring different use cases for Big Data and our team have built a Sentiment Analysis tool

Will Microsoft Azure meet your real-time analytic needs?

March 2, 2017

Sara Handel, one of our Melbourne consultants, recently undertook a Proof of Concept  for real-time streaming analytics on network sensor data for a utility client using Microsoft Azure Streaming.  In this blog Sara shares some of her key takeaways from this project. Microsoft Azure Streaming is straightforward and you can quickly setup a streaming solution

Are you realising the full potential SQL Server?

One of our Sydney consultants, Dawie Kruger, shares some of his thoughts on the features and functionality available in Microsoft SQL Server that he feels are being underutilised by organisations. I was privileged enough to attend Microsoft Ignite 2017 this year on the Gold Coast. There was considerable talk about the new features that will

A Crash Course in Survival Analysis: Customer Churn (Part III)

February 17, 2017

Joshua Cortez, a member of our Data Science Team, has put together a series of blogs on using survival analysis to predict customer churn. This is the third and final blog of this series. Survival Regression Knowing how long customers stay is all well and good, but what if we want to know the factors

Microsoft Ignite

Two of our consultants, Michael Betterton and Dawie Kruger, are attending Microsoft Ignite on the Gold Coast this week, and in this blog they share some of the insights from the event. The opening key note delivered by Scott Guthrie, the VP of cloud and Enterprise for Microsoft had a strong cloud message to the

JISC and HEPI in the UK publish a Headline News article referencing the success of Altis’ work on Learner Analytics in Australia.

February 9, 2017

JISC – a not-for-profit organisation that encourages Higher education institutes to adopt digital services and solutions, and HEPI –  a UK think tank devoted to higher education, published a news article earlier this week entitled ‘Reducing drop-out rates with Technology: Learning from Australia.’ This article reviewed best practice approaches across the world, and referenced the

A Crash Course in Survival Analysis: Customer Churn (Part II)

February 8, 2017

Joshua Cortez, a member of our Data Science Team, has put together a series of blogs on using survival analysis to predict customer churn. This is part two of the blog series. Survival Curves The survival curve is fundamental in survival analysis. It tells us the probability that a customer will still be subscribed to

A Crash Course in Survival Analysis: Customer Churn (Part I)

January 31, 2017

Joshua Cortez, a member of our Data Science Team, has put together a series of blogs on using survival analysis to predict customer churn. This is part one of the blog series. Introduction Customer churn is familiar to many companies offering subscription services. Simply put, customer churn is the event of a customer opting out

Australian Utility Week – Key Takeaways

January 14, 2017

Our Utility Practice Lead, Rhubesh Goomiah, attended The Australian Utility Week 2016 conference held in Sydney last week. The conference focused on the theme of ‘Building the Digital Utility’, in this post Rhubesh shares some of his key takeaways from this event. This was my third consecutive attendance at this event and this year Matt