[UPDATED] OEG Best Practice: Integration Scheduling in Anaplan CloudWorks

edited March 28 in Best Practices

Anaplan CloudWorks enables seamless data integration between Anaplan and other cloud-based applications. To optimize performance and efficiency, it's crucial to follow best practices when scheduling integration tasks. This article outlines recommended guidelines for creating integration schedules in Anaplan CloudWorks, emphasizing the importance of staggering start times for improved overall performance.

UTC and Navigating changes in local timezones:

When planning and setting schedules within CloudWorks, it's crucial to recognize that scheduling is exclusively supported in UTC (Coordinated Universal Time). While the Anaplan CloudWorks scheduling interface offers a dropdown for time zone selection, featuring options like "(UTC-05:00) America/New_York" or "(UTC+01:00) Europe/Paris," this serves merely as a geographic indicator. The actual scheduling backbone operates in UTC, making it essential for all scheduling activities to be aligned with UTC rather than localized time zones, including considerations for Daylight Saving Time adjustments. As local times shift — springing forward or falling back — adjustments to your CloudWorks schedules may be necessary to ensure alignment with your intended local time frame. This understanding is vital for maintaining accuracy and efficiency when effectively scheduling CloudWorks.

Understanding the Impact of Scheduling Integrations:
Scheduling your integrations, with adjustments as minimal as 10-30 minutes, can significantly improve system performance. This method is crucial for preventing tasks from starting simultaneously, which can lead to reduced efficiency and overburdened system resources. Moreover, it’s beneficial to schedule tasks at non-standard times and avoid starting a CloudWorks job at the top or bottom of the hour. For example, start a CloudWorks job 17 minutes past the hour. This approach helps distribute tasks more evenly throughout the hour, reducing the likelihood of concurrent task execution. By carefully planning start times away from common scheduling points, you can better mitigate resource bottlenecks and enhance operational smoothness.

Staggering Start Times for Individual Scheduled Integrations:
As illustrated in the screenshot below, stagger the start times of individual CloudWorks Integrations or CloudWorks Integration Flows to maximize performance. Introducing a time delay minimizes resource contention and ensures efficient utilization of system resources.

Avoiding Concurrent Execution:
Prevent strain on system resources and impact on overall performance by scheduling integrations with sufficient time gaps between tasks. This minimizes the likelihood of resource conflicts and potential slowdowns.

Consideration for Integration Complexity and Data Volume:
Account for integration complexity and data volume when scheduling tasks. Heavier integrations or those involving large datasets may require additional processing time. Adjust start times accordingly to allow for ample processing time.

Monitoring and Fine-Tuning:
Regularly monitor integration performance, processing times, and bottlenecks. This helps identify areas for optimization and fine-tuning of integration schedules.

Documentation and Collaboration:
Maintain clear documentation of integration schedules, including start times and task dependencies. This documentation facilitates troubleshooting, future reference, and collaboration with team members involved in the integration process.

By adhering to best practices for integration scheduling in Anaplan CloudWorks, you can ensure optimal performance and efficiency. Staggering start times of integrations, even with small time differences, significantly improves performance by avoiding resource contention. Regular monitoring and fine-tuning of integration schedules enable smooth data synchronization between Anaplan and other systems.

Author: Quin Eddy, @QuinE - Director of Data Integration, Operational Excellence Group (OEG)