Using ThinkAutomation as an ETL tool
Raw data comes from an unlimited number of sources. You’ve got emails, phones, surveys and webforms. You’ve got chat transcripts, sentiment analysis, social media. Not to mention your existing databases, your activity logs and transaction activity. The list goes on.
Currently, up to two-thirds of businesses confess to getting little to no benefit from the host of data they collect.
They need an ETL tool. But what is ETL, and how can ThinkAutomation be the tool to help you use the data you’re collecting?
What is an ETL tool?
ETL stands for extract, transform, load. It’s a process of collecting a business’s raw incoming data, organising it, and depositing it into an accessible location in a usable format.
In short, it’s the process of making raw data usable and easy to access. ETL prevents useful data from becoming trapped in silos, jumbled across legacy systems, or lost in a sea of content.
An ETL tool, then, is software that that completes or assists with this process. The goal of the ETL tool is to improve the efficiency and speed of making data accessible and usable. (Compared to a manual ETL process.)
With so much data pouring into your business, it’s overwhelming to try and understand and make use of it all as it is. That’s where extraction comes in. Extraction is about pulling all the useful data from these sources.
With ThinkAutomation as your ETL tool, you can do exactly that. And you don’t have to spend precious time pouring through every incoming message. All you need to do is set rules outlining what data you want to find and extract, and where you want it from.
From there, ThinkAutomation can extract from any data touchpoint. It can parse your emails, perform database pulls, and process your documents.
The next step your ETL tool needs to complete is transforming the data. Transformation is all about applying rules to the extracted raw data. It’s the process of sorting the data and converting it into a useful format.
With ThinkAutomation, you can tailor these rules to your exact needs.
So, you can use your ‘IF’ rules to tell ThinkAutomation how to transform your data. If you want different data in different formats, you can do that too. Simply specify the key characteristics of the data, and what format to convert it into. From there, ThinkAutomation will take care of your data transformation. So, conversions remain consistent, and there’s less risk of human error.
So, having extracted, collected and transformed your raw data, you now need to store it somewhere. It’s ready for step three of ETL: load.
Without an ETL tool, loading your data can mean time-consuming manual data entry, which is prone to error. So, ThinkAutomation has this step covered too. It can load your information into any database you choose. And, thanks to conditional processing, it can even sort different data sets into different locations.
Plus, ThinkAutomation can act as a bridge between your existing databases. So, you can push, retrieve and modify your data, across your applications. The result is data that is much more accessible and ready for you and your teams to use.
And so much more
The best thing about using ThinkAutomation as your ETL tool is that its utility doesn’t stop at extracting, transforming and loading. It’s capable of countless workflows, meaning you’re free to automate more than just the ETL process.
So, why not start making better use of your data today? See what ThinkAutomation can do for you as an ETL tool (and more), with a 30-day free trial.