DM Review Published in DM Review in January 2006.
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Pfizer Centralizes Enterprise Data Integration with Informatica PowerCenter

by Product Reviewer

REVIEWER: Kevin Fleet, director of data warehousing and BI for Pfizer Inc.

BACKGROUND: Pfizer is the world's largest pharmaceutical company with more than $45 billion in annual revenue and 115,000+ employees. With more than 13,000 skilled researchers at sites around the world, the company's global research and development (PGRD) division is responsible for the entire company's R&D activities.

PLATFORMS: Sun 4500 running Sun Solaris.

PROBLEM SOLVED: PGRD is responsible for managing R&D in an environment characterized by frequent mergers and acquisitions, partnerships, restructurings, changing government regulations and new competitive pressures. Management needed centralized access to global financial data, greater transparency into time and resource allocation, and tightened expense management to reduce procurement spend through supplier analysis, consolidation and volume discounts. However, an infrastructure of incompatible, nonintegrated applications made it practically impossible for PGRD to gain a holistic enterprise view of data needed to achieve these goals.

PRODUCT FUNCTIONALITY: Deciding to standardize our integration efforts in order to better leverage our resources and expertise, Pfizer implemented Informatica PowerCenter as the foundation of our global information factory. A data warehouse and operational data store environment designed to support PGRD's long-term objectives, the global information factory utilizes PowerCenter to transform and integrate data from 13 disparate applications for financials, budgeting, resource management, facilities and project management. More than 3,000 users access the global information factory, including managers and analysts who can now view globally consolidated financial data, closely monitor personnel time and resource investment in drug-discovery projects and analyze operations and facilities data. With PowerCenter as the reference standard, PGRD's data warehousing group has assumed the role of an integration competency center (ICC), providing a well-defined project management methodology, extensible data integration architecture, reusable processes and disciplined change management. This centralized, structured approach has delivered substantial ROI, both monetarily and in the ability to more effectively support Pfizer's corporate objectives.

STRENGTHS: With PowerCenter, Pfizer has been able to create a more manageable and structured data integration environment. PowerCenter's strengths include its ability to integrate virtually any type of data from any system, its extensive reusability of data mappings and its codeless development - all of which make it easier for Pfizer to integrate new data sources and adapt to business change without writing costly and difficult-to-maintain manual code.

WEAKNESSES: Version control and enterprise information integration functionality were not as strong as desired when Pfizer began working with PowerCenter four years ago; however, both issues have been addressed in the most recent version.

SELECTION CRITERIA: Selection criteria revolved around the ability to enable a structured and easily manageable data integration environment, including broad sourcing and vendor-neutrality (e.g., the ability to source data from any system) and support for agility in the face of change.

DELIVERABLES: The global information factory powers six information environments represented by function-specific data marts for finance, budgeting, operations/facilities, resource management/time tracking, production support and business requirements analysis. PowerCenter supports numerous standard reports for these environments plus ad hoc reporting and analysis. In the realm of master data management, PowerCenter enables the global information factory to act as the authoritative source for reference data.

VENDOR SUPPORT: Pfizer has extensively leveraged Informatica professional services, who provided valuable knowledge and resources. Additionally, through the Informatica customer advisory board and other executive-level feedback and partnering channels, Pfizer has enjoyed the unique opportunity to influence the evolution of PowerCenter's product functionality.

DOCUMENTATION: PowerCenter documentation is complete, intuitive and online.

Informatica PowerCenter
Informatica Corporation
100 Cardinal Way
Redwood City, CA 94063
(650) 385-5000

Product reviews are customer testimonials. We thank the author of this review for taking the time to share his or her expertise.

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