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We use erwin to design conceptual, logical, and physical data models for new projects. We use a Forward Engineering tool to forward engineer data models into new database structures. We use the reverse engineering tool to bring databases into data models and erwin. We also generate HTML reports of the models to share with our customers. Whenever we do have a new project that requires a new approach, we do try using erwin for it. For example, if we have an XSD message file, then we would try to see if there is a way to get that into erwin for better visibility of the structures that we have to work with.
The use cases are for our enterprise data warehouse where we have an enterprise model being maintained and we have about 11 business-capability models being maintained. Examples of business capabilities would be finance, human resources, supply-chain, sales and marketing, and procurement. We maintain business domain models in addition to the enterprise model. We're on-premise, a virtualized data center. We're running this as client-server, the client being PC-driven and the back-end for the erwin Mart is virtualized Windows Servers.
We use it for our conceptual business-data model, for logical data modeling, and to generate physical database schemas. We also create dimensional modeling models.
We work on different platforms like SQL Sever, Oracle, DB2, Teradata and NOSQL. When we take in requirements, it will be through Excel spreadsheet which is a Mapping Document and this contains information about Source and Target and there mapping and transformation rules. We understand the requirements and start building the conceptual model and then the logical model. When we have these Data Models built in erwin Data Modeler tool, we generate the PDF Data Model diagrams and take it to the team (DBA, BSAs, QA and others) to explain the model diagram. Once everything is reviewed, then we go on to discuss the physical Data Model. This is one aspect of the requirement from Data Warehouse perspective. Other aspect of the requirement can be from the operational systems where the application requirements might come through as DDLs with SQL extension files where we reverse engineer those files and have the models generated within erwin Data Modeler. Some of them, we follow the same templates as they are. But some others, once we reverse-engineer and have that Model within the erwin, we make changes to entity names, table names and capture metadata according to RBC standards. We have standards defined internally, and we follow and apply these standards on the Data Models.
erwin Data Modeler does conceptual, logical, and physical database or data structure capture and design, and creates a library of such things. We use erwin Data Modeler to do all of the levels of analysis that a data architect does. We do conceptual data modeling, which is very high-level and doesn't have columns and tables. It's more concepts that the business described to us in words. We can then use the graphic interface to create boxes that contain descriptions of things and connect things together. It helps us to do a scope statement at the beginning of a project to corral what the area is that the data is going to be using. Then we do logical data models, which are completely platform-independent. They're only about datasets, the owned attribution, and different key analyses to determine what primary keys we want. And then we do database designs, which relates to the physical data models. We also do reverse-engineering where we are capturing the catalogs of existing systems, or purchased software, or even external vendor datasets. They send us data sets and we can reverse-engineer what they send us, especially the backup snapshots where a vendor in the cloud will send data as a backup restore. So to help the documentation for the reporting team, we do reverse-engineering so that they know what the table and column structure look like, along with sizing, nullability, and keys and constraints. erwin is on-prem. We have the Workgroup Edition, which means that we don't just have client-side software. We have client-side software that stores the data models back into a database which is on an on-prem server.
The whole purpose of the erwin tool is for the designing of databases. We use it for our conceptual, logical, and physical database modeling.