I love data. It’s the secret to uncovering insights you never imagined possible. It’s the fuel that feeds the AI revolution. And it sets disrupters apart from traditional businesses. Yet what I love even more than data is data governance because it propagates a love for data in corporate culture.
Data governance makes the sky look bluer, the grass look greener, and the flowers smell sweeter.
The above may sound a bit extreme, but it is Valentine’s Day, so I’m attempting to be poetic. But seriously, data governance really does make the world of data a better place. And there are three primary reasons why I love data governance.
- Data governance helps you find the data. Nearly every business person on the planet has run into the issue where they can’t find the data they need to do their job. And more often than not, if they do find “data,” it’s often not the right data, nor data they can access. And it’s frustrating, because they need that data to do their job. Data governance helps all data citizens find the data they need to do their jobs. It’s that simple.
- Data governance helps you understand the data. So even if you’re one of the lucky ones who actually managed to find the data you need, it’s quite possible that once you found it, you didn’t understand it. Why? Because different data means different things to different parts of the business. And without data governance, those meanings live in the heads of many people across the organization. Figuring out which person has the definition you need is nearly impossible, especially in large, complex companies. Data governance, on the other hand, enables you to understand what the data means – from its definition and meaning, to its lineage, to who can access it (and who can’t). And if you’re fortunate enough to have a governed data catalog as well, you can crowdsource information about that data to provide further context about ho w and where it’s used, for what purpose, and by whom.
- Data governance helps you trust the data. This is probably the #1 reason I love data governance. Giving business users the ability to find and understand their data is great, but when they are confident that the data is right, that’s when great things happen. This confidence empowers everyone across the business to use data to spark innovation, gain competitive edge, and drive operational efficiencies. And when these things happen, the entire business benefits. And that’s when businesses transform to become truly data-driven.
So you see, you can’t uncover your hidden potential or disrupt your competitor’s world without data governance. And that’s why I love data governance.
Stan leads Collibra’s Data Office and is responsible for overall data strategy, data infrastructure and translating internal learnings into value for our customers.