This growing importance is supported by the business problems companies are experiencing and the high value they place on data governance solving these problems. While large companies are leading the way with data governance programs, the survey found half of smaller companies are involved or plan to be.
Yet, there is not a one-size-fits-all governance program for all companies. How should business leaders in medium and small companies implement a data governance program that is both effective and fits with the company’s size and resources?
The importance of data management and data governance is the first item business leaders need to understand in order to convince themselves, their managers and their employees of the need for improvement. In fact, the inability to communicate the value of managing data is a major obstacle for most companies, as cited in the survey. As a business leader in a medium-sized company, there are many management topics to tackle to ensure the company is financially successful and that customers, partners, employees and investors are satisfied. That is enough to keep business leaders busy, so why should they also care how the company’s important data is managed? Is that not the job of the technical and operations staff? The technical and operations staff should be involved in data management, but business leaders should be setting the priorities, rules and metrics to ensure the data supports the business needs.
Data errors cause significant business issues each year. Billing data quality issues result in millions of dollars in lost revenue. Embarrassing company communications to valued customers are caused by incorrect contact information such as names or gender. Data errors in financial reporting can cause penalties, financial restatements and incarcerations. Data security breaches can cause loss of confidence and broad negative press coverage. Sales forecasting inaccuracies can result in the company setting the wrong earnings expectations to the board or industry analysts. Many companies start data governance programs when data errors lead to these serious business issues. But why wait? Can any of this happen at your company? How confident are you that the important data in your company is accurate, complete and reliable for all the business processes served?
Similar to people management, capital management and product management, data management is a business driven function that manages another important asset: a company’s business data. Not all business data has the same value and, therefore, not all business data needs to be managed with strong business leader involvement. In practice, about 20-to-30 percent of a company’s business data is critical and strategic. Data governance is the data management activity that ensures the company’s most critical and strategic business data is acquired, created, updated, deleted and stored with proper processes, policies and people.
The 10 steps below offer medium-sized enterprises a practical approach for getting data management started....
Read the 10 steps here
Article from Information Management