The success of a data governance program depends on two factors: Strategy and implementation.
I&I’s 3-phase data governance strategy assesses your current program, identifies challenges, and helps implement a business-aligned data governance program.
There are three phases to our approach to data governance. The first phase focuses on planning, identifying the needs, defining the process flow and a pilot project to demonstrate how certain pain points can be eliminated. Let’s take a look at phase 1 in detail:
Build a collaborative data governance engine plan
Data governance is not just an IT solution, it is also a business solution. A successful data governance program relies on seamless collaboration between all stakeholders.
From our extensive interactions with organizations across verticals, we have come to realize that uncertainty about compliance, dissatisfaction due to bad data, difficulty in making business decisions, and misapplication of financial resources are the top challenges that business teams face. On the other hand, IT teams find themselves plagued by challenges, such as inadequate data, futile efforts at cleaning up data, and wastage of man hours.
So, in phase 1, we bring together your business and IT teams to identify their needs and prerogatives. We present the consequences and pay-offs of a robust data governance program to them.
We document the issues in the current system and the teams’ expectations from the new system, and use these insights to build a data governance scope, a flow diagram and a business data glossary.
The data flow diagram maps how data from key segments interact with each other. The glossary records the major data elements, their sources, the individual/team accountable for the data, and the security privileges required to access the data.
While our best-in-class industry practices help maintain the balance between planning and control, our data management framework touches on premier data disciplines, including vision, structure, policies, standards, supervision, resolving, monitoring, and communication.
At the end of phase 1, we set specific budget and concrete project milestones, besides assigning a directly responsible individual (DRI) to track the progress of each business unit.
Establishing a data governance pilot project
After finalizing the data flow diagram and business data glossary, we venture into the pilot project with 2-3 prime business units. We find workable definitions and business rules to address the concerns of all stakeholders. We actively engage them in framing the vision, mission, purpose, and goals, and identifying the RACI (responsible, accountable, consulted and informed roles) of the project. Further, we identify the likely pitfalls, create appropriate risk mitigation strategies, and include these strategies in the project timeline charter.
Through the pilot project, we aim to demonstrate how you can unearth potential business opportunities by eliminating the pain points associated with data management. We show the possibilities of business optimization through data governance, while also building trust and openness.
In phase 2, we build both a comprehensive plan that incorporates lessons from the pilot project and a strong business case for your data governance initiative.
Develop a data governance implementation roadmap
As first steps towards developing data governance roadmap, we align your data governance initiative with a security framework, helping you establish rights and accountabilities for access management. We also implement data masking and set up a vault to protect sensitive data using encryption. We assign internal auditors to perform periodic audits that ensure regulatory, contractual, and architectural compliance. We develop necessary software management tools and ensure proper data management, duly mitigating the risk of data loss.
On the business side, we assign data owners who grant access permissions and ensure availability of critical data. We adopt a data cleansing and profiling process to ensure data quality and handle data problems. We assign data stewards to handle quality exceptions.
With our requirements-gathering tool, we analyze the requirements-result gap in your organization and appropriately align tasks. Taking into consideration all your constraints in terms of technology, skill set, and budget, we estimate the funding required, based on allocation of additional roles to existing employees, recruitment of new employees, training for stakeholders, and development of software tools.
Usually, implementing a data governance system and assigning relevant responsibilities tend to be of low priority for business and IT teams. IT considers it a business issue, while business does not usually understand the importance of effective data governance. To get the buy-in of both parties, ensure commitment to the cause, and gain political support from the leadership, we present a persuasive business case.
At the end of phase 2, we will have a comprehensive data governance implementation roadmap, which describes how data will transform the business from being chaotic to being proactive. predictive.
In phase 3, we help you form a data governance committee, define and convey the roles and responsibilities of each member, and implement the program.
Drive the data governance program engine
We employ technology platforms that enable better tracking, reduce errors, and ultimately provide trustworthy data to your organization’s datavores. We establish a data monitoring process to perform batch inspection of data sets and fine-tune practices. We help you frame the rules to determine good data and generate a monitoring report that summarizes the state of data in your organization.
We also discuss the various roles involved in data governance and create comprehensive job descriptions. We help you establish a council of ultimate authority to direct on data generation, use, and curation.
We build a cross-functional project team involving all stakeholders, including members, such as Chief Data Officer (CDO), Data Steward, Subject Matter Experts, IT manager, Data Owner, and Database Administrators. These people help you assess, choose, prioritize, and drive your initiatives.
Further, we help set up a steering committee to enforce policies and procedures. This will be the governing body for all data-related processes, policies, and standards, which help you make data-driven decisions. We set the committee’s agenda and mandate to enable focused and prioritized governance initiatives. We help you choose metrics that ensure that your data governance program stays aligned with predefined objectives.
We then assist in creating and communicating policies and procedures specific to your organization. For every policy designed, we record a policy lifecycle to enable changes and updates to the system.
Our web-based policy and procedure management application helps in establishing and implementing effective data management policies. Our application also helps address data issue escalation and resolution procedures. We create a critical data quality strategy by incorporating data cleanup and establishing data standards.
Redesigned data processes are usually likely to face pushback from some stakeholders. Our framework presents a compelling case for the changes and prepares people well in advance to reduce the chances of potential setbacks into the journey. By helping you effectively communicate the need for effective data governance and periodically refining practices according to business needs, we work towards eliminating resistance to change.
By the end of phase 3, an agile data governance program will have been successfully implemented throughout your organization. Maintaining the structured project flow will ensure that all checkpoints are reached, promoting the value of data within the organization.
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