Becoming a Collibra Ranger at Equifax

Note: The Collibra Ranger of the Year celebrates an outstanding data professional who has led their team in designing and implementing data intelligence programs that drive real business value. I am proud and humbled to be this year’s winner for the Collibra Excellence Award in the “Ranger of the Year” category. 

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Equifax is a global data, analytics, and technology company that plays an essential role helping people make critical decisions with confidence. Equifax is tracking to become the only “cloud-native” global data, analytics and technology company in its space. With the modern infrastructure agility of a startup, backed by 123 years of expertise, data stewardship remains at the heart of its business. Our unique blend of differentiated data, analytics, and technology lets us create the insights that power decisions to move people forward. 

I joined Equifax as a member of the newly created Enterprise Data Office leadership team focussing on Enterprise Information Architecture in September 2019 and immediately immersed myself in Collibra University. 

Equifax has more data than most companies. But before Collibra, metadata was siloed in different geographies and different departments. We didn’t have a way to centrally manage the data and automate the principles of data governance

To facilitate implementation of Collibra at Equifax, I actively pursued and was awarded a Ranger Certification in July 2020, and it has really helped me acquire a holistic view of the Collibra platform. 

I not only learned the Collibra operating model, but my Ranger education is helping me leverage the platform the right way. We are working towards a steward driven platform, automating the process as much as we can. 

The immediate, significant benefit of my Collibra education was that it gave me the knowledge and skills I needed for the meticulous job of rolling out global adoption and deployment across Equifax business units in North America, South America, Europe and APAC. 

Driving onboarding, adoption, and much more 

Equifax began a digital transformation in 2018 and I’ve worked across the Enterprise Technology and Governance teams to build a single pane of glass for metadata worldwide. 

To bring five global regions together across the Equifax Data Fabric, I organized a centralized Collibra team that now supports a global Community Steward organization, where responsibility for data resides with the region.

One of the biggest initial challenges to onboarding was the vocabulary. There were conflicts between the Collibra lexicon and what Equifax stewards had used for decades. My strategy for bridging the communication divide included creating a set of ground rules to improve communication between the business, the technology, and the Collibra team by working with the stewards to add explicit terms to the vocabulary. 

Additionally, I facilitated the creation of the Operating Model in what was a very collaborative exercise that brought together the Global Metadata Management Committee and the Equifax Data Office. 

I immersed myself in the enablement resources Collibra provides to leverage tools to support the business imperatives. And I worked both technically and with the business to guide my peers to effectively leverage Collibra APIs, workflows, and configuration capabilities. 

To provide visibility into the globally managed data sets and regional activity, we produce monthly Executive reports for the CDAO and SVPs who own the Data Fabric and Analytics platforms. 

I’ve also worked on gaining approval for Equifax to move from DGC to Collibra Data Intelligence Cloud. 

Proud to be a Ranger 

With the migration to Cloud, I’m excited to collaborate with Business and Technology in initiatives like Automated Technical Lineage and Auto-Classification capabilities to aid the Equifax data stewards. 

I’ve been fortunate enough to have the opportunity to mentor and inspire data stewards across Equifax more effectively as a Ranger and, hopefully, inspire others in the organization to pursue their Collibra certification. 

My knowledge of Collibra continues to assist Equifax in shaping the long-term data fabric strategy. 

I am very proud to be a Collibra expert and advocate, and it is an honor to be recognized by Collibra as the 2022 Ranger of the Year!

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