For some companies, establishing data governance policies is driven by compliance with regulatory mandates. For other companies, it's the realization that success with "big data" is only possible if the data being analyzed is complete and consistent. In either case, creating a data governance process that succeeds requires communication of the process, people who execute and administer it, and technology that supports the efforts.
Communication to Gain Adherence
No business process succeeds if the people in the organization don't believe in it. That's why, before any data governance process is imposed, there needs to be communication to the entire organization about the motivation behind the process and the importance of the process to the future of the business.
Sharing that understanding of the purpose of the data governance process allows the people assigned to data governance projects a common understanding of what is to be accomplished by the project. It also makes sure that everyone else in the organization—the people who create, use, share, and protect the data—understands that the responsibility for data quality is one of their key job functions.
You can emphasize the importance of adherence by identifying a set of metrics that will be tracked and making sure they're reported not just up the management chain but also down to the employees whose actions generate those metrics.
Build a Team With the Right People
Your data governance process can't succeed if there aren't people dedicated to its success. Start with a small group that spans the business to incorporate multiple viewpoints and address the special needs of each department. The business needs to drive the effort, as they are the ones who know what the data represents. Once the team has defined the overall data governance strategy, you can assign individuals the responsibility as data stewards to own the data quality tasks.
The initial team should be predominantly composed of business employees, not technology. Ultimately, though, technology will be needed to support the data governance efforts. Once the business team has defined the data governance priorities and goals, add representatives from technology who can identify tools that will support the data governance efforts.
Use Technology to Support Your Strategy
Technology and the available tools shouldn't drive your data governance strategy, but they're imperative to support the data management and controls needed for data governance success. Invest time to explore technical options, such as those from Veritas, that support needs such as managing archived data in accordance with regulatory and compliance requirements. Make sure you evaluate technical solutions according to defined criteria that assesses the tool's impact on your ability to securely access data, maintain its accuracy, and keep an audit trail.
While you should leverage supporting technology as much as possible, don't overcomplicate your solution with too many tools. That will simply frustrate users and reduce compliance.
Simplify the Complex Task of Implementing Data Governance
Rolling out a data governance strategy is a complex challenge for many organizations. Leverage the help of experts who can guide your tools assessment and support their implementation. dcVAST has expertise working with the Veritas suite of tools that support data governance; we can help you evaluate your needs, implement a solution, and provide managed services to ensure your data governance strategy is working. Contact us to learn more about our data management services.