Elkjøp Nordic Gives Users Easy, Secure Data Access while Adhering to GDPR
Agile data access and protection, faster time to market, low overhead
Electronics retailer Elkjøp Nordic has grown to be a household name in the Nordic region. Traditionally a B2C company, it is working to expand to the B2B market, and making the shift from being product-focused to consumer-focused.
The company is using business intelligence (BI) tools to access data from its enterprise data warehouse and other sources, and as more people requested access to granular data, Elkjøp found it was missing vital capabilities. It couldn't grant access while maintaining proper security and governance, especially as set out in the EU's General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). It needed to mask and secure sensitive customer and employee data while still allowing users to access the data they needed.
Elkjøp turned to TIBCO® Data Virtualization for the solution. It provides a uniform, IT-controlled access point where users can easily find and access the data they are granted access to without having to worry about where the data resides. The implementation, branded as Elkjøp’s Virtual Enterprise Data Access Layer (VEDAL), is now the default source for analytics data.
"If you are an analyst or a data scientist, you can access a wide variety of data through the VEDAL," said Johannes Melkeraaen, BI architect.
Instead of a command-line environment in databases and other sources, TIBCO Data Virtualization makes it easy for users to produce needed data within their end-user applications, whether that data is stored on premises or in the cloud.
"We have the capability to centralize all these connections to the underlying sources and we can switch one over to the other without users noticing," said Melkeraaen. Within VEDAL, Elkjøp's datasets can be delivered as standardized services, so they are easily consumed in a number of end-user formats (REST + ODBC/JDBC).
Progress for Stalled Projects
Because of GDPR regulations, Elkjøp had to put some projects on hold because proper data couldn't be accessed without risking violation. With TIBCO Data Virtualization, Elkjøp IT was able to quickly implement required masking and security, so users could advance these projects and move the business forward.
Fast Access to Data Services
TIBCO Data Virtualization has enabled Elkjøp to give users access who wouldn't normally have access to underlying data sources. The company has been able to consolidate data services in a single place. One example is the ticker in the reception area that shows sales of the day in real time. The ticker system calls a REST service in TIBCO Data Virtualization and pulls POS-system and website e-commerce data from the data warehouse. Custom pages in the ERP system also rely on TIBCO Data Virtualization REST services for up-to-date stock, price, and campaign information.
Agile Data Protection
With TIBCO Data Virtualization, Elkjøp can easily protect sensitive data. IT staff can give users access to data, and in just minutes, mask data that should not be accessed by them. The system provides faster time to production and an efficient feedback loop.
"You don't have to bring up a new project, developer, or programmer," said Melkeraaen. "You can just focus on the delivery itself, testing it readily and receiving instant feedback from a user. It's very easy to deploy so you can change it on the fly."
Fast Time to Market, Low Overhead
Because it runs on a dedicated server, implementing new projects is easy. What used to take days or weeks to provision now takes minutes or hours—an order of magnitude reduction in time to market. And while Elkjøp has grown in size over the years, the number of employees in the Insight and Analytics department has stayed nearly the same.
"We are delivering more with the same manpower," said Melkeraaen.
Elkjøp's use of TIBCO Data Virtualization continues to grow steadily as more users join the company and more data is collected. Building on its TIBCO Data Virtualization foundation, Elkjøp is looking for more ways to use its data to advance business efficiency and effectiveness.