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Business Intelligence Dictionary: Operational Database | NSBI

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What is an Operational Database?

NSBI Business Intelligence Dictionary defines an operational database as one that serves the current needs of a front end user. An operational database is normally a normalized database that allows real time reporting. Hence it does not require a big volume of historical data but rather current operational data that is required to run a specific front-end desk application.

NSBI Tutorials aim to make Business Intelligence (BI) and Data Warehousing (DWH) attractive to non-technical people as well as to those who are now entering the field and are excited by the numerous ways data is changing our world. NSBI Tutorials are written and delivered by Nick Shopov, (BI Software Developer & DWH Consultant).

Operational Database Example

Imagine you are running a pizza place and you receive call orders. You need a software application where you can log those orders and forward them to the kitchen. This software application requires an operational database that can quickly and easily save and retrieve today's orders.

It is likely that the call attendant does not need to analyze financial performance for the last year and redundant records will only slow down the software application and hurt your service. For this goal you may consider building a data warehouse in addition to your operational database.