Redshift vs. S3 for the Business Intelligence Connector

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Product tier: Available to Expert subscription tier

Data from the Business Intelligence (BI) Connector can be delivered to your organization through Amazon Web Services (AWS) in one of two ways:

  • Redshift is a database hosted by Greenhouse, where you configure your data tool to pull data using credentials generated by Greenhouse
  • S3 is cloud storage that is owned by your organization. When using S3, your organization creates and maintains all the credentials, and shares them with Greenhouse. 

You'll need to choose either Redshift or S3 when configuring the BI Connector. See the sections below for more in-depth explanations.

Redshift

With Amazon Redshift, Greenhouse hosts the data in our Redshift instance and will provide your organization with credentials used to access your data. 

In Redshift, the data is already formatted in a relational database and prepared to be plugged directly into your data tool. However, because Greenhouse maintains the database, you won't be able to control the location or format of the data.

Note: Redshift is not available for organizations on the EU silo.

S3

S3 is a cloud storage service provided by Amazon Web Services. When using an S3 bucket, your organization hosts and controls all the data in your own database. The BI Connector data is delivered in a .csv, which can then be transformed and uploaded into the S3 bucket. 

Note: The .csv files can be easily transformed into a relational database using Athena, another Amazon service. 

Some organizations prefer S3 for the following reasons:

  • They control the authentication credentials (username and password) for their data and grant the BI Connector permission to send new data. 
  • S3 is often less expensive than Redshift. 
  • Their organization is on the EU silo and wants to use the BI Connector. 

The choice

Ultimately, the choice between S3 and Redshift is based on what is best for your organization. If you're in doubt about which one to choose, consult with your development and data team - they probably have a preference for the storage.