Data governance is the framework that guides the policies and processes involving data and its use in the organization. It is a fairly new term that gained popularity through the government implementation of data privacy laws, such as the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA), both enacted in 2018.
From the term governance, it highlights taking control of data and how it moves and is used within the organization. It is about taking control and ownership of your data as an asset and how it can be used to attain corporate goals. So let’s get into the 4 facts you need to know about data governance…
1. Difference between Data Governance and Data Management
The concept of Data Governance and Data Management may sound similar but they refer to different things. You can think about Data Management as the umbrella term that refers to the specific detailed programs that an organization handles the data it produces, receives, and stores. It is mostly focused on handling data from the Information Technology (IT) perspective and practice.
On the other hand, This is the blueprint that lays these programs down and ensures that they are in line with regulations within the organization and the law and considered a part of the broader data management strategy. It is focused on handling data from the Corporate Management perspective, as a business strategy.
Both are very important concepts for today’s organizations, as it sets the tone for the critical management of data in today’s economy. It is not just an issue for the IT department but should be a concern across the organization – whether you’re in Sales, Marketing, Human Resources, or an Executive, you need to know about how data is being handled in your organization.
2. Benefits of Data Governance
Business Intelligence is a huge market. According to a report by Grand View Research, the industry was valued at US $24.9 Billion in 2018 and will have an expected annual growth rate of 10.1% from 2019 to 2025. Many companies have made the strategic implementation of data governance in their day-to-day operations.
As a result of these investments, plus getting the right data governance consulting as they roll out changes, companies have been able to get the following benefits:
- Ease of compliance with internal and external regulations
Many companies have created the positions of Chief Data Officer or Chief Information Officer as a response to the growing focus on data. Since GDPR was rolled out, any companies doing business with Europe needed to have this representative. Dedicating a person in this role can help manage the task of maintaining data governance in the company.
- Protecting data from breaches
With so many large corporations becoming vulnerable to data breaches, such as leaking information about their employees and customers, securing the system is critical. This is a hit towards reputation and in turn, revenue. Putting up the proper security measures is a key activity.
- Standardizing the data architecture across your organization
Connected to the protection of data, having all employees from top to bottom understand the importance of data security and having a standardized process to receive, store, and process data will help support the initiative.
- Ensuring data quality and accessibility for everyone in the company
Helping the whole company understand the data infrastructure will make them invest their efforts to maintain the data integrity for their own activities because they can see how it affects their colleagues and the company’s bottom line.
- Improving transparent about data within and outside the company
Outlining the sources and destinations of relevant data helps you trace where any aberrations and mistakes may have occurred, allowing you to address and mitigate any possible breaches.
- Creating smoother analysis and reporting processes
As part of business intelligence strategies, implementing dashboards and enterprise-wide software that can analyze data without the need for specialists. This returns quantitative results that can help explain any inconsistencies and point your company to the direction of better strategies.
- Cutting costs and increasing revenue through higher efficiency
Proper data governance helps you use the information more efficiently. Because you invested in the right tools, your reports and data analysis are more reliable and help you make better decisions with your business.
3. Data Governance Challenges
While Data Governance has been around for some time, businesses still find it a challenge to implement these frameworks fully.
- Lack of understanding about the importance of data
The concept of data has been understood as the domain and responsibility of the IT department. While this is no longer the case, you may have to explain to your other departments that keeping data integrity is in everyone’s best interest.
- Investment and rolling out enterprise-wide tools
There are a lot of business intelligence tools out in the market, and there are popular options and support systems that you can rely on to have a smooth user experience. Of course, this still requires money and effort to install.
4. Does My Business Need Data Governance Consulting?
Given the challenges that surround the implementation of these frameworks, it can be difficult to get things running for your organization. However, getting around to these changes is not a question of if, but when. Soon, to comply with regulation and survive in a technology-reliant ecosystem, you will need these systems in place.
All businesses can benefit from a sound data governance strategy, but of course, your needs may be at a different scale from other companies. This is where data governance consulting can help you. If you aren’t sure where establishing authority over your data starts, there are several experts on the field that can help guide you through the process. Your company will be equipped with the right technology that your business needs without the danger of over-investing.
Investing in Data Governance consulting is going to ease the transition. You will not only address the technical questions but the human challenges that will arise in the process as well. Choosing this direction will move you forward as a progressive organization, ready to exist and thrive in the new generation of business.