Full Scale Data Architecture College Tour

Yesterday I attended the Full Scale Data Architecture College Tour. A unique opportunity to step into the boardroom and find out what an executive thinks about IT, architects, architecture and data in particular. The host of the event; Ronald Damhof and Sylvia Butzke (COO at PGGM Investments) did a great job of keeping the conversation going. Sylvia was willing to answer questions from both Ronald as well as from the audience.

I will not give a complete transcription of the 1,5 hour event. Following are a few of my highlights of the evening.

Sylvia seems to be a leader who overlooks the situation / organisation and tries to understand thoroughly what is happening and why it is happening. Are these things necessary or is there a possible alternative.

“Doing the right things instead of doing things right”

You have to understand why things are the way they are and then; “So what?”. Why is it relevant.

For Sylvia the role of an Architect is to ask the right questions about the existence of an organisation. This should be done from a business perspective. It doesn’t make sense to start with the technique, although that seems to be the easiest way. Often because the Architecture capability is considered an IT role. The Architect supports in asking the relevant business questions and helps the business answer these question.

The outcome of an Architecture exercise must give an organization something to hold on to. This is not without obligation. An Architecture should have authority within the organisation. There is no general Architecture. Each Architecture is specific and in context of that organisation.

Together with the board, an Architect (it can be discussed which specific role, I guess it will be the Enterprise Architect) should act as a trusted advisor. Someone partly responsible for the course of the organisation. Both roles should reinforce each other. They must have the same goal. If they collide, the do not have the same goals. It’s a skill where they must experience each others added value.

Sylvia warns not to rush to technology to quickly. That looks very tempting because of the digitalisation and all the technological opportunities. If you do not see the bigger picture, you might only build a point solution for a current challenge.

Keep on thinking. Are we asking the right / relevant questions? Are we using the right datasets to answer certain questions?

So what’s the role of data in the boardroom? The boardroom is responsible for the strategy of an organisation. What are we going to do? How are we going to direct the organisation. The way this is organised, determines the maturity of an organisation. Technology is supportive. Data can be collectedby effective use of IT (digitalisation). The boardroom needs to be able to understand how digitalisation works

Normally organisations are managed in different layers. To get an better understanding, it makes sense to manage the organisation structured as a T. The Top layer is still responsible, but the expertise is top-down in the organisation. Making decisions together in the deepest fibers of the organisation. The board needs to gather the right expertise and understand what is happening. This means that the board needs to determine how much they are willing to understand. The experts need to determine how much information and expertise they need to aggregate to make it able to consume by the board. The challenge for the top management is to find balance between innovation & experimenting versus discipline & data quality. It’s not a matter of choosing but trying to do both.

The form in which an Architecture is communicated (e.g. Archimate) is not necessarily important. What is relevant is to understand its relevance and its dependency within the total Architecture. Certain dimensions of the Architecture are important. The Architect is the conversation partner.

Data is a means and not an end in itself. One can look at data as a mean to reach a certain goal. Data can (and should) be used to answer questions. Business must learn how to ask questions. If done right, data can be seen as an asset. The value of data can be compared with the value of people, material and money within an organisation. To manage people correctly within an organisation, organisations have an HR-policy in place. A Data-policy should be in place as well. A policy specific to the organisation.

According to Sylvia being Agile means being able to learn and to adapt to change. These days things are changing very fast so you cannot direct a company on what. You need to focus on the why and according to which principles.

The actual challenge within organisations is that we want to do ‘something’ with data. The important question to answer is; Why? What are we doing? Which processes are important? Which data is involved? What is the dependency of the different processes and the related data? Determine the Business Context first before you start to do ‘something’ with data.

“Stay curious and immerse yourself in the why”

Final takeaway; “Stay curious and immerse yourself in the why”; So what?

Next meetup on 22nd of March will be the Full Scale Data BOK Kickoff session

If you are interested in the Full Data Architect movement, check out these online profiles on TwitterLinkedIn, and Facebook.

Originally published on LinkedIn.

Collegetour; an executive talking data

Thursday, February 15, 2018 – the first edition of the Full Scale Data Architecture College Tour will be organized. The Full Scale Data Architects have secured a C-Level executive of a high ranking financial institution who is willing to be interviewed by the host; Ronald Damhof and is also willing to answer questions from the audience.

Last week I was present at the third Full Scale Data Architect meetup. The Full Scale Data Architect group is created by Ronald Damhof and Martijn Evers.

Ronald and Martijn have a mission; “…to make Data Architects come to grips with the new reality of data, and how to get control back. For this, we started a movement for Full Scale Data Architects to help us combat the ever-increasing data-tsunami. For raising awareness we postulate 10 commandments for the (aspiring) Full Scale Data Architect. Join us on our mission to combat data entropy.”

The topic of last weeks meetup was; “The Future of Data/Information modeling”. For me, as an Oracle Data and Analytics consultant, with a focus on the technical implementation of data, these meetups are very interesting. I am infected with the red virus and approach most data challenges from an Oracle perspective. It’s good (and in fact a necessity) to look further than the technical implementation of data as well.

The key take away from the last meetup is that there is no standard solution for whatever data challenge. You always have to focus on the customers’ concerns. Familiarize yourself with the customers’ concerns and base your solution (both functional as well as technical) on these. A passionate argument by Martijn Evers and a lively discussion in/with the audience.

“Collegetour; an executive talking data”

I really liked this meetup and I am looking forward to the next one. This one will be really interesting. Thursday, February 15, 2018 – the first edition of the Full Scale Data Architecture College Tour will be organized. The Full Scale Data Architects have secured a C-Level executive of a high ranking financial institution who is willing to be interviewed by the host; Ronald Damhof and is also willing to answer questions from the audience.

I already secured my seat, I hope to see you there as well. Have a look here at other planned events.

If you are interested in the Full Data Architect movement, check out these online profiles on TwitterLinkedIn, and Facebook.

Originally published on LinkedIn.

UKOUG Tech17 is a wrap

Last week I have attended the UKOUG Tech Conference at the ICC in Birmingham. This conference is a combined conference with APPS-, TECH- and JDE-related content. Quistor was present with a stand at the JDE-conference. For me, these kinds of events are a way of exchanging knowledge and meeting old and new friends.

I have been given the privilege to speak. My first presentation was about ‘Becoming Insight Driven With Big Data’. This was basically an overview of Oracle’s answer to the changing needs in the Data and Analytics atmosphere. The second presentation tried to answer the question; ‘Is Data Warehousing Dead’. During this presentation, I discovered that preparing for two presentations at one conference (which I have never done before) is more work than I had expected. It took me too much effort to get the story across. This is a lesson for next time so I will be better prepared.

For those interested, I uploaded my slides to Speaker Deck.

Becoming Insight Driven with Big Data – https://speakerdeck.com/daanalytics/becoming-insight-driven-with-big-data …

Is Data Warehousing dead? – https://speakerdeck.com/daanalytics/is-data-warehousing-dead …

In the Christmas edition of Quistor’s QPulse there are two articles from my hand with some more insight of my visit to Birmingham. I have attended several presentations. If I may highlight a few, I would first like to mention Robin Moffat, because he is so passionate about his topic; Kafka. Rob Cowell showed excellent skills explaining Oracle Big Data SQL. Last but not least Mike Vickers managed to get his story about Oracle BI Publisher across in a very structured manner. If I compare their performance to mine, there is some room for improvement 😊.

Still for me personally, it was great to meet ‘old’ and new friends. There was also an offline presence of the #obihackers IRC channel. Finally, a chance to meet people in real-life instead of from behind the keyboard.

Thanks, UKOUG, for the organization and for giving me the opportunity to be part of your conference. I had a great time and I hope to be back next year in Liverpool.

Don’t forget to submit your paper for Tech Experience on the 7th & 8th of June 2018! Submit your paper on http://www.tech18.nl. More info here.


Originally written for LinkedIn.

Call for Papers nlOUG Tech Experience 2018

#nlOUGTech18 | Vanwege groot succes kondigt de nlOUG graag aan dat de Tech Experience in 2018 wederom zal plaatsvinden! | Due to great success, the Dutch Oracle User Group (nlOUG) is very happy to announce that the Tech Experience will again take place in 2018!

English version below

Vanwege groot succes kondigt de nlOUG graag aan dat de Tech Experience in 2018 wederom zal plaatsvinden!

Het concept blijft hetzelfde, verspreid over twee dagen zullen er presentaties gegeven worden die de complete Oracle Technology Stack bedienen. Het congres zal net als vorig jaar plaatsvinden in De Rijtuigenloods in Amersfoort (onder voorbehoud). Noteert u de datum alvast in uw agenda!

Datum: 7 en 8 juni 2018. 

De nlOUG wil haar leden en andere geïnteresseerden vragen een bijdrage te leveren aan het programma. We zijn dan ook op zoek naar aansprekende klant- en technische presentaties

De eisen die we stellen aan de presentaties zijn:

– Een onafhankelijk, niet-commercieel verhaal

– De business case wordt bij voorkeur door de klant zelf gepresenteerd

– De technische aspecten worden bij voorkeur door een technisch inhoudelijke expert belicht

– De betreffende case is actueel, met andere woorden, maximaal 1 jaar oud.

– De presentatie dient een uitdagend/vernieuwend karakter te hebben, liefst zodanig dat het de bezoekers aan het denken zet en discussie uitlokt.

Heeft u een aansprekende presentatie die u wilt delen met uw vakgenoten? Dien dan uiterlijk 24 december 2017 uw abstract in via http://www.tech18.nl/. Nadat we uw inzending hebben ontvangen zal het organisatiecomité deze beoordelen en u hierover informeren.

Voor meer informatie en sponsorinformatie kunt u contact opnemen met het secretariaat via: secretariaat@nloug.nl

Due to great success, the Dutch Oracle User Group (nlOUG) is very happy to announce that Tech Experience will again take place in 2018!

The concept will remain the same. During a two-day programme there will be presentations that serve the complete Oracle Technology Stack. The venue will again be the Rijtuigenloods (with reservation).

Date: June 7th & 8th 2018. 

The nlOUG wants to ask its members and other interested parties for a contribution to the program. We are therefore looking for compelling customer presentations and technical presentations.

The requirements we place on the presentations are:

– An independent, non-commercial story.

– The business case is preferably presented by the customer.

– The technical aspects are preferably illuminated by a substantive technical expert.

– The case is relevant, in other words, not more than one year old.

– The presentation must have a challenging / innovative character, preferably to let the visitors think about the topic and provoke discussion.

Do you have an inspiring presentation you want to share with your peers? Please fill in the form at http://www.tech18.nl/ before the 24th of December. After we’ve received your form, the programme committee will judge the presentation and contact you.

For more information and sponsorship information please get in contact with nlOUG: secretariaat@nloug.nl

Please check out some impressions from the last event.

I hope to see you all next year.

Originally published for LinkedIn.

Check out the 2017 UKOUG Conference agendas.

Last week I announced that I will be speaking at the UKOUG Tech17. Today I can announce that the 2017 UKOUG Conference Agendas are now live! Check out the agendas for the co-located UKOUG conferences for Apps17JDE17 and Tech17.

I will be part of the Business Analytics track. For me personally it is a great honour to be part of this track.

I will be presenting on Monday 4 December at 09:00-09:50 and Wednesday 6 December at 12:25-13:15.

Check out the complete line up here.

Also special attention for other Quistor activities at the UKOUG 2017 Conference. Quistor is one of the sponsors of the UKOUG JD Edwards Conference & Exhibition 2017. My colleague Jack van den Brink will be hosting three sessions:

It will be a challenge to pick and choose. See you all next December 2017.

Originally written for LinkedIn.

I am speaking at UKOUG Tech17

Last Friday I received confirmation that my papers for next UKOUG Tech17 in December are accepted. I will be talking about Oracle (Big) Data (Warehousing). The presentations will cover different aspects of the Oracle Data Management ecosystem.

Presenting at the UKOUG Tech17 will be a challenge, but I am really looking forward to it. It will give the opportunity put myself and my employer Quistor on the map. Quistor is always present at the UKOUG JD Edwards Conference & Exhibition. Next to our JD Edwards activities, Quistor is also active in the Business Analytics and Big Data market. Therefor it is great that we are offered the opportunity to be part of the UKOUG Tech17.

I am expecting a great lineup in the Business Analytics track. It will be great to meet ‘old’ and new friends. There will also be an offline presence of the #obihackers IRC channel. Finally a chance to meet people in real-life instead of from behind the keyboard.

See you all next December 2017.

Originally written for LinkedIn.

nl.OUG Tech Experience 16 June 2017

Today the second day of the nl.OUG Tech Experience took place in ‘De Rijtuigenloods’. After a really interesting first day it was a real challenge to be at least as good as the day before on day 2. Also for this day the Dutch Oracle User Group has prepared an interesting and varied program. It is nice to see that there was a mix of people which represented the Oracle Community. There where ACE’s and non-ACE’s, men and also women, veteran speakers and relatively newbies (including myself), young and old, Dutchies and foreigners. All in all a great mixture of people with all the same goal; exchanging knowledge, meeting (new) people and having a lot of fun.

Duncan Mills (Oracle) kicked off the day explaining how he loves instead of fears the (Oracle) Cloud.


One of the things Duncan has learned in his long impressive career is to be pragmatic. You should make your life as easy as possible. The Cloud offers various tools to support this. In the end the Cloud is a ‘Force Multiplier’ for developers

After the keynote the Experience continued with the different parallel sessions. Also today, one of the SIG-Leads of the nl.OUG, I had the privilege to be part of the BIWA-track (Business Analytics & Data Integration). Today we had four different parallel tracks.

“Migration steps from OWB to ODI” – Gurcan Orhan

Oracle Data Integrator (ODI) is Oracle’s flagship product when it comes to Data Integration (ETL / E-LT). Officials Oracle Warehouse Builder (OWB) does not exist anymore. Still lot’s of company’s are using OWB. Migrating from OWB to ODI is not that easy by default. Gurcan explained which migration steps could make this process a bit easier.

“Introduction in Big Data Cloud Service and Use case” – Marco Klaassens & Daan Bakboord

When you talk about Big Data and the Cloud, Oracle might not be the first supplier people think about. Still Oracle is making serious progression when it comes to the various Cloud products. With an introduction into the Oracle Big Data Cloud Services, all the products could be placed into the context of the Oracle Information Management Reference Architecture. These architectures always make more sense when explained by a real use case.

“Oracle BI is just Lego for adults”

“A Day in the Life of an Oracle Analytics Query” – Christian Berg

When Christian Berg takes the stand you always know his message is supported by sarcasm, fun and beer. It does not matter which product you use in the Oracle Analytics stack, they are all based on the same core. With Oracle Analytics you don’t write a query (just use Oracle SQL Developer for that. Easier and cheaper). Oracle Analytics generates a query based on the metadata you provide. Therefore it is essential to understand how a query is constructed.

Of course Christian had one of the best one-liners of the day; “Oracle BI is just Lego for adults”. Different components fit together to make e.g. the perfect query. If one component does not fit, you don’t get a saw to make the component fit, you try another one which is made to fit in that place.

“Collaboration on analystics in the Oracle Business Intelligence and Data Visualization Cloud Service” – Hasso Schaap

There are several reasons to collaborate on Analytics. Sharing Insights and Story telling are just two examples. Oracle Analytics offers various options to collaborate. Hasso made some reusables. Get into contact with him and start collaborating.

At the end of two really great days, Lucas Jellema wrapped up the experience. With a few salutes, to the board of the nl.OUG for being so brave to host this event, to the audience for joining the conference and to the speakers who were well prepared and willing to share their experiences.

Special thanks to the sponsors.


It was a really great event. I enjoyed it a lot. It’s great meeting ‘old’ friends and meeting new ones. The bar is set high for next years experience. Already looking forward!

Download presentations from #OGhTech17 from https://www.nloug.nl/handouts.aspx – only a few slidedecks available, more to follow soon.

See you all next year.

Originally written for LinkedIn