Discover the reasons to implement data governance and some benefits that it can bring.
Published 20 Jan 2023
In a world where data is becoming increasingly important, businesses must develop ways to manage and protect their data effectively. Data governance is one such way. Data governance protects and manages data to ensure its accuracy, quality, and security. It includes developing policies and procedures for collecting, storing, and using data. It also involves establishing roles and responsibilities for those who work with data.
By implementing data governance, businesses can ensure that their data is reliable and secure. In turn, this can improve decision-making and reduce risk. As such, data governance is essential to any business that relies on data.
Data governance and data management are two terms that are often used interchangeably. However, they refer to two different concepts.
Data governance ensures that data is accurate, complete, and compliant with internal and external regulations. On the other hand, data management is the process of planning, specifying, controlling, storing, retrieving, organizing, and manipulating data. While data governance is concerned with data quality, data management is concerned with its quantity and structure.
Data governance can bring numerous benefits to businesses. Among them are:
The four pillars of data governance are as follows:
It’s crucial to relate data governance to its impact on an organization by considering revenue, cost, and risk, explaining how it will be helpful to get stakeholders involved, and part of creating a framework. By applying your stakeholders in the project planning process, you help ensure that relevant issues are being addressed and get buy-in for the project. This commitment to success from key individuals helps guarantee the overall success of the venture.
The success of data governance depends on its ability to be measured. Gauging the impact of data governance should be possible in each use case and for the organization as a whole. The success of a data governance framework depends on setting and tracking Key Performance Indicators (KPIs). It’ll also help reveal any areas that need more focus or improvement.
A good data governance framework will improve the usefulness of data for all users and outline processes to get the most out of available data. It includes having the right technology in place so users can access and use data per set requirements (e.g., via outlined use cases). Some of the most common capabilities are:
The data governance framework becomes easier to establish by addressing more use cases and delivering more benefits. By doing this, the time needed to address each new use case effectively decreases while also providing a higher return on investment. An organization can eventually implement a data governance framework.
5 Areas of Data Governance
Any data governance process will only succeed with a clear sense of ownership and accountability. Diligence in this area ensures that your organization’s data is well-managed and protected. Furthermore, everyone in the organization must buy into this system to be truly effective.
To ensure accountability throughout the organization, you should establish a data governance council with members from every department, including executives. The newly established data governance council will define and implement company-wide procedures and policies related to data across the organization, with the power to enforce them.
Data governance is a complex but critical process for any organization that collects and stores data. Standardized rules and regulations must be established and followed to protect this data and ensure it’s used appropriately. These guidelines should cover all aspects of data usage, from collection to storage to destruction. They will be created by the data governance council, with input from the appointed data stewards.
Once you have instilled accountability in your organization, the next step is responsibility. To ensure the right people are responsible for your data, appoint a dedicated data steward. Individuals in this position report to the data council and are responsible for implementing and enforcing the rules and regulations defined by it.
While data plays a significant role in many business decisions, not all data is created equal. Most companies can’t even trust the information they have on hand. To ensure your company’s data is top-notch, the data governance board should create a reliable set of quality standards with help from the data steward. It’ll ensure that everyone within your organization understands and adheres to your data quality standards.
Data governance processes within your organization must maintain transparency. Third-party audits can reveal the handling of sensitive data, the reason for its usage, and its purpose. Data transparency will safeguard your company in the event of a data breach and enable you to keep learning how data is used within your business.
Although storing data in the public cloud is a concern for businesses, they should know that their provider will take measures to protect against exposure or theft.
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Enterprise compliance officers who ensure that their company follows regulations and standards must trust that their cloud vendor will do the same. They also need the vendor’s help to ensure that their data stored on a server not belonging to them complies with guidelines such as:
Cloud service providers know that data governance is essential to gaining customer trust and providing a positive customer experience. Therefore, many leading vendors offer tools for data assessment, metadata cataloging, access control management, information security, etc., as part of their platform’s capabilities.
It includes setting policies and guidelines to ensure that data is secure and accurate and regularly monitoring data usage.
It encourages activities and techniques which promote accuracy, completeness, consistency, timeliness, validity, and uniqueness. It helps prevent errors and ensure that data is as accurate and reliable as possible.
Data management is the understanding, categorizing, storing, securing, and analyzing of data. Managing enterprise data is crucial because it allows businesses to see how they can reduce costs while increasing efficiency and security.
A data governance framework includes discovering data to create a unified view across the enterprise. It has the data itself and data relationships and lineage, technical and enterprise metadata, data profiling, data certification, data classification, and collaboration.
Generally, data governance consists of establishing guidelines for the use, retention, and security of data within an organization. It might involve defining data models, distributing roles and responsibilities regarding the use of data, or creating standards for data handling.
Data governance is more than just a conversation; it requires implementing tools to ensure that data is managed and handled responsibly. SafetyCulture is a multi-purpose inspection and operations platform that can assist businesses with data governance. This platform makes it easy to:
Rob Paredes is a content contributor for SafetyCulture. He is a content writer who also does copy for websites, sales pages, and landing pages. Rob worked as a financial advisor, a freelance copywriter, and a Network Engineer for more than a decade before joining SafetyCulture. He got interested in writing because of the influence of his friends; aside from writing, he has an interest in personal finance, dogs, and collecting Allen Iverson cards.
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