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Executive Insight

We are happy to announce that the new Alfresco Search and Insight Engine was released this week, providing a revolutionary approach to analyze content and metadata in real time.

insight engine - 2

Why are analytics crucial to business?

Many of our customers reported that they have a lot of content in their repository that takes up space, but they don’t have a clear idea of what it is. Our new analytics solutions help you answer the following questions:  

  • What is stored in your repository and how is it used?
  • Who is using your content?
  • What can be removed to free up space and reduce your storage costs?
  • How can your business be supported with the information they need to get their work done?

Why should I use the new Alfresco Search and Insight Engine?
Before we focus on the advantages of the new Alfresco Search and Insight Engine, let’s have a look at traditional approaches used by other companies:

  • A separate ECM repository and a separate data warehouse are used for reporting
    • Both are connected through an ETL (extract – transform – load) process

What are typical challenges with this approach?

  • The addition of a whole set of architecture (data warehouse), which adds cost & complexity
  • The ETL process needs to be setup and maintained
  • Within that data warehouse, you have a new schema designed around reporting that only Business Analysts will understand, which is very limited. 

Alfresco’s strategy:
The new Alfresco Search and Insight Engine offers a new, modern approach to analytics.  The biggest difference is that there is no need for a separate data warehouse solution. We have built the new Alfresco Search and Insight Engine on the highly scalable, reliable and fault-tolerant open source search platform Solr 6:

Alfresco Insight engine

What are the major benefits of the new Alfresco Search and Insight Engine?

  1. Powerful Insights for End Users:
    • Trend analysis with custom metadata support and search queries to uncover insights and to make better decisions
    • Simple preparation & consumption of reports with the pre-configured report & dashboard builder based on Apache Zeppelin
    • Up to the minute tracking of KPIs and business metrics using live data to make faster decisions
  1. Developer Friendly
    • Report creation without special analytics knowledge due to the schema-less design in Solr
    • Simple report generation using existing skills thanks to the SQL query support
    • Use of 3rd party tools such as DbVisualizer and Zeppelin  
  1. Easy to Administrate
    • Familiar technologies make it easy to install & manage by Alfresco admins with no ETL or data warehouse to configure and manage
    • No risk of data leakage with full permissions support and no additional data warehouse needed
    • Fast & scalable due to Solr design

More updates are still coming!

This first release is very much focused on content services, but we are working on additional differentiators to give you even more insight into your data. Here’s what you can expect in the future:

  • Process, Governance and usage type data like audit trails
  • Improvements on the UI and query side => at the moment, we have an out of the box report generator that is based on Zeppelin. We will have some sample ADF UIs and also a “Bring your own” approach => if you are already using a complex reporting tool, you will be able to connect it to Alfresco and use it.

Stay tuned for further updates, but in the meantime we encourage you to learn more about the new Alfresco Search and Insight Engine on our website.

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