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Database Engineering : BRT - Board of Revision of Taxes, City of Philadelphia
 
 

Client's Voice:
"I have used this new website a couple of times and found it to be really super!!"

To build an online enterprise database solution that is capable of returning results quick and efficiently. The biggest hurdle was migrating three decades worth of data into a more robust database schema/design.

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Challenge: MBPS needed to find solutions to:
  • The Migration of over 600,000 property records from the BRT’s Mainframe system.
  • The Migration of over a million data fields.
  • Decrease online usage and dependency to the BRT mainframe system.
  • Optimize new database and systems to be able to serve thousands of records quickly and efficiently.
  • Utilize middleware program to help translate records between many systems.
  • Create a scalable standardized database; allowing flexibility, expandability, ease of use, and availability.
  • Clean up data going to the new BRT database.
  • Write smart logic triggers encompassing the BRT business rules.
  • Optimize full data loads from mainframe system (typically taking over 12 hours) to less than 5 hours.
  • Plan/Build a low cost solution without compromising performance, stability, or efficiency.
  • Allowing the BRT to have no interruptions in their business operations.
Strategy: Learn how the BRT conduct it’s business operations, which was accomplished in a IT Business Analysis researched and published by MBPS. This was extremely important to have done first for every aspect of the BRT mainframe data derives from the business rules that the users of the system inherit and put in. Without this understanding the culture and the data made little sense.

Main objectives were as follows:
  • Analyze current BRT business rules.
  • Define old and new systems and the data.
  • Create new rules for engaging data.
  • Create database triggers capable of properly scoring data.
  • Build development and test platforms.
  • Automate all data loads.
  • Create security of failure through system clustering.
  • Create a fail safe solution through data clustering.
Solutions:
  • Build a database upon the backbone of Oracle systems.
  • Create a strong logical database schema, through the analysis of business rules.
  • Migrate BRT data from the VSAM mainframe, into the new database with the use of smart triggers.
  • Run integrity checks on all data by comparing records migrated to the system.
  • Create dummy database for the purpose of testing and development.
  • Put redundant systems in place, creating a cluster of databases with the intent to take on operations if the main database fails.
Benefits:
  • BRT database availability uptime is 100%,24 hours a day.
  • Clean reliable data.
  • Quick data returns for online applications.
  • Better schema design, allowing for fast development of applications relying on the data.
  • Higher Security Standards.
  • Over 92% Performance over the previous system.
  • Easy to maintain database.
  • Portability and Affordability.
Conclusion: The end result of the project was an enterprise level database solution. This successful project set as a shinning example to the City of Philadelphia and its other departments on how to accomplish a complex project with good project management, good SDLC process and team oriented communication. The citizens, real-estate agents, property developers, and BRT staff have seen greater improvements in there own productivity and workflow thanks to the accurate information that is now available to all.



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Wednesday, April 24, 2019 10:42 PM
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Case Study Overview
Problem

To build an online enterprise database solution that is capable of returning results quick and efficiently. The biggest hurdle was migrating three decades worth of data into a more robust database schema/design.
Solution

• Build a database upon the backbone of Oracle systems.

• Create a strong logical database schema, through the analysis of business rules.

• Migrate BRT data from the VSAM mainframe, into the new database with the use of smart triggers.

• Run integrity checks on all data by comparing records migrated to the system.

• Create dummy database for the purpose of testing and development.

• Put redundant systems in place, creating a cluster of databases with the intent to take on operations if the main database fails.

Benefits

• BRT database availability uptime is 100%,24 hours a day.

• Clean reliable data.

• Quick data returns for online applications.

• Better schema design, allowing for fast development of applications relying on the data.

• Higher Security Standards.

• Over 92% Performance over the previous system.

• Easy to maintain database.

• Portability and Affordability.

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