Data is one of your organization’s most valuable assets, and how well you manage the quality, ownership, and governance of that asset determines, to a great extent, the overall organization’s success. Giving a short attention span to data governance can result in a buildup of errors in your business.
When crucial data is disorganized, your business can face rising costs for storing as well as managing duplicate data and penalties for not complying with regulations, among other expenses. Additionally, it becomes hard to tell if your organization’s decisions are based on correct data. To reduce such risks, you need to invest in proper data governance.
In this article, we’ll define data governance, state who needs governance, provide potential benefits, and explain the principles as well as the steps you need to take to use data governance in your organization effectively.
What is Data Governance?
Data governance refers to a collection of roles, standards, processes, policies, and metrics that ensure the effective and efficient use of information in enabling a business to achieve its goals. Data governance is not data stewardship nor master data management (MDM). But it’s an important part of MDM that establishes the responsibilities and processes that ensure the security and quality of the data used across an organization.
A well-executed data governance strategy is significant for any company that works with big data, as it explains how your organization benefits from common, consistent responsibilities and processes. It also defines who can take what step, upon what information, in what circumstances, using what methods.
Who Needs Data Governance?
Data governance can be used by organizations in almost any industry, especially those needing to process massive data volumes. Every department in your firm can benefit from data governance.
Reasons Why You Need Data Governance
A well-planned data governance strategy offers many benefits to your business, including:
Better Data Quality
Data quality is used to describe the accuracy, completeness, and consistency of data. A good data governance strategy helps improve Data governance by defining standards to maintain the integrity of data.
Better Data Visualization
Data governance helps to reduce the complexity of data visualization, making it easier to manage, govern and garner insights. It helps your organization to better understand and analyze data, reducing your attack surface.
A Better Access to Data
By getting data about your finances, clients, employees, and more and ensuring that it’s used efficiently and effectively, you can give your employees easy and reliable access to data that helps guide them in significant business decisions.
Play A Part in Regulatory Compliance
Most laws need the retention of certain records and dictate how long they should be kept. Data governance principles can help your organization to comply with these regulations and avoid steep lawsuits and penalties.
Asset for Businesses
As earlier said, data is one of your organization’s most precious assets. Data governance ensures that this asset is useful, secure, and available. A strong data governance strategy also reassures customers about how their data is managed.
Data governance brings context to your organization’s data. It enables your teams to document, organize and evaluate the quality of available data assets. Additionally, clarifying responsibilities and roles eliminates confusion and makes data collaboration and processes easy to follow.
Help Businesses Reach Their Goal
Data governance helps make things more precise and transparent when it comes to data. It helps your team to remain on the same page, making it easy to achieve your goals.
Data governance principles
To guarantee successful data governance implementation, keep the following data governance principles in mind:
#1. Data Integrity
Data integrity is of utmost importance among data governance principles since it involves the process of ensuring and preserving the validity and accuracy of your data. Whether the data you have is being used appropriately depends on the entity using it. All the participants using your data should be truthful and ethical to ensure seamless accessibility and retrievability, reliability, traceability, data security, and seamless decision-making concerning the data. You also have to use a data management tool that guarantees data integrity.
#2. Data Transparency
All the data governance processes implemented throughout your business should exhibit utmost transparency. Your customers and partners should know how, when, and why their data is used.
#3. Data Accountability
Accountability is very crucial in any successful data governance process. If no one in your organization takes ownership of data governance, it will be blunt, ineffective, and directionless. Accountability and ownership have, therefore, to be practical across your organization.
#4. Data Administration
Along with accountability comes responsibility. You should appoint a data steward in your organization. The steward will be responsible for ensuring that all rules and regulations are followed.
#5. Data Compliance
A data governance process should give you a platform to meet the demands of government rules and regulations such as the US HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability), EU GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation), and industry requirements like PCI DSS (Payment Card Industry Data Security Standards).
#6. Data Protection
To avoid risks of data breaches and misuse of sensitive data, you should ensure that you have full oversight of where your data is stored, who is updating it, who has access to it and for what purposes. According to IBM, the average rate of a data breach rose from $3.86 million in 2020 to 4.24 million, and thus protecting yourself from scammers is of utmost importance.
#7. Data Standardization
Data format can vary from one source to another. Data standardization aims at converting data to a standardized format so it can be processed and analyzed.
#8. Change Management
Change management refers to any approach that helps to align both processes and people to strategic initiatives that will help your organization to achieve its business vision. It’s, therefore, crucial for your organization to be able to track data changes over time.
#9. Data Documentation/Data Audit
All the data being used is open to audits. All decisions, processes, and controls about data covered under data governance can be subject to audits. Hence, they must all contain proper documentation that certifies compliance.
7 Steps to Succeed in Your Data Governance Strategy
Your data governance strategy may vary depending on the size of your company and industry. Here’s a list of some best practices for efficient data governance:
To succeed in data governance, you need to highlight what needs to be carefully controlled in the data governance strategy and the benefits expected from this effort. Defining the business driver will be the basis of your organization’s data governance framework.
Data identification and classification play a huge role in data governance strategy. It aids in:
For efficient and effective data, you need to identify which data you need and the value it carries. The process is as follows:
- Discover all the data stored by your company
- Determine the value of that data
- Classify and label the data depending on its sensitivity and value
- Map where it is stored
Identify and engage the right team to handle your data and give them the power to implement the most efficient practices for your company. Remember that data governance doesn’t only involve the IT job.
While the IT team is very vital in providing the technology needed to manage your crucial data, other team members are also important. You’ll, for instance, need someone with the power to make decisions and someone to define data quality standards.
Data governance is a joint effort with deliverables from all parts of the business, so everyone’s roles and responsibilities should be well-defined.
To get the right governance approach for your business, you need to look for scalable tools that can be integrated with your company’s existing environment. Always focus on tools that will help you realize the organization’s benefits spelled out in your data governance strategy.
You should deploy control measurements in your IT applications, business process, and /or reporting where it makes the most sense.
Communication is the most crucial part when it comes to data governance and so you should ensure that it’s done frequently. Again, you should ensure that all your employees are well-trained to handle the new tools and methods.
How Can ClicData Help You with Your Data Governance?
Data governance has an impact on your organization’s operational, strategic, and tactical levels. As a result, data governance must be undertaken at a continuous frequency for effective data structure and consumption.
Fortunately, ClicData’s features can help you effectively and efficiently facilitate data governance principles and practices. With ClicData, you can:
- Connect and aggregate data, making data available and usable with a single source of truth.
- Manage and transform your data with a high level of security using our ETL tool.
- Store everything in a data warehouse.
- Respond to business users with a visualization tool. Data governance is mostly not about raw data, but usable data.
Investing in Clicdata’s features ensures that all the data governance principles are well respected in your organization.
Ready to level up your data governance game? Sign up today to try ClicData’s features for free.