The United Methodist Church relies on the General Council on Finance and Administration (GCFA) to coordinate and administer their finances, property, and statistical resources, as well as to safeguard the Church’s legal interests and rights. The GCFA is responsible for consolidating and reporting financial and administrative data from conferences, districts, and churches.
GCFA was responsible for consolidating and reporting financial and administrative data from 59 annual conferences across the nation. These conferences housed data in a variety of homegrown and commercial software products and platforms. Data structures and semantics varied across the conferences and needed to be made consistent before they were imported to the consolidated operational data store. This process was manual and lengthy, meaning that often the data in the store was weeks or even months old, adversely affecting the decision process.
GCFA determined that this legacy infrastructure was no longer functional for their current business needs and embarked on a modernization project. As the selected data integration product would be used by many users spread across the globe, GCFA needed a product that was easy to learn and use. Additionally, GCFA was looking for a product that could handle complex data transformations, data cleansing, job orchestration, scheduling, and other features that would enable GCFA to automate the integration process. The product also needed to be able to support the numerous varied databases and formats used across the 59 conferences.
Enter Astera Centerprise
GCFA evaluated several products, but ultimately decided on Astera Centerprise Data Integrator because it exceeded all of their requirements.
Astera Centerprise is a high-performance, scalable data integration platform that allows businesses to meet today’s advanced data needs. Powered by an enterprise-grade, parallel processing engine, Centerprise offers data syncing, mapping, transformation, parsing, and extraction capabilities, all through a single platform.
GCFA asked Astera to help with a detailed proof of concept which they would present to the United Methodist’s Information Technology Association’s annual meeting. With the help of the conference’s IT staff, Astera built end-to-end integration with a few selected conferences, chosen for the complexity of their operations. GCFA pitched this proof of concept at the Technology Association’s annual meeting where it was approved.
The United Methodist Church relies on the General Council on Finance and Administration (GCFA) to administer their finances, property, and statistical resources. GCFA is who Astera worked with to find a solution for the United Methodist Church.
GCFA is responsible for consolidating and synchronizing financial and administrative data from 59 conferences nationwide. This data is often in multiple formats and housed in various platforms, making it difficult to have up to date data in GCFA’s data store.
GCFA used Centerprise to automate the data integration process, so they could have up to date data anytime they needed it.
Centerprise’s straight forward, drag-and-drop interface was a major draw for GCFA and the United Methodist Church. Furthermore, using the SQL Source and Lookup components, the developers at the United Methodist Church were able to start using the solution right away, eliminating any interruption and any excess time or cost which can be incurred when using a new software. Overall, GCFA selected Centerprise for its superior usability, flexibility, and overall functionality.