5 Professional Tips for Improved Data Governance

data governance

Data runs businesses. Businesses fail without accurate data. In this increasingly digital world most data is stored electronically. This makes it easily accessible but also vulnerable. The problem is that there is an overabundance of data, and no gatekeepers. These gatekeepers provide vital services to ensure accurate data is processed correctly while remaining secure. The process of managing data is sometimes referred to as data governance.

What is the definition of data management?
To understand data management is to understand the inter-working of the entire operations of a particular business. Anyone who starts the process of managing their own data needs at the very least to understand how the data is stored, processed, accessed, and secured.

So what is data governance? It is quite simply the processes and procedures put in place to ensure that the data received and stored is consistent and trustworthy. Businesses utilize data in many ways. Operations and sales personnel are utilizing data the most to analyze what works for their customer base. If these people have no gatekeepers to process this data, then the business suffers.

1. Gatekeepers Are an Important Component for Any Data Management System.
Gatekeepers can be anyone who has a stake in the product or service. Enterprises often select executive sponsors who provide accessibility and visibility to a product or service. These sponsors support the efforts of the organization to manage their data. The executive sponsor relies on the data management team to implement and manage the details of the project. Their roles as gatekeepers add an extra layer to ensuring accurate and timely data is accessible.

2. Frameworks Stabilize Data and Provide Support.
A data governance framework is essential and necessary to ensure data is processed and secured properly. Frameworks provide stability within the organization. This stability can greatly affect how the organization operates day-to-day and throughout the year. The governance of an organization can make or break business operations. A clear set of standards along with guidelines provide necessary support for operations, finances, sales, procurement, and legal departments.

3. Relationships Matter.
Good data management practices involve stakeholders at every stage of the process. Major projects need support from stakeholders that have influence to move them forward. Emphasis on benefits goes a long way towards completing projects. When you're managing data on a large scale, it is important to have the authority behind you.

4. Catch the Vision and Develop a Good Strategy.
By now your vision of where you want your organization to go should be clear. Periodically you should take a look at your vision statement to see if it should be tweaked or changed. With the rapid changes in technology it should be a "no-brainer" to revisit your goals and understand how your standards reflect them. A good framework will allow you to check and change your processes.

Once you develop a good strategy you should analyze what's working and what's not working within your organization. You may have to tweak your processes to ensure your data remains secure and easily accessible.

5. Set Priorities and Focus.
It might be tempting to do everything at once. It's not prudent. You might want this feature, but no one else does. You do have to focus on what's most important to your organization. You might want to start small and pick one small project that will wow your customers.

It is important to set some priorities for your business. Once you have a clear understanding and focus on what you want your organization to do, you can then take a step of faith.

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