Pragmatic Data Governance—Let’s Get Real, People

By Tina McCoppin

I’ve had a number of clients and colleagues comment how difficult it is to make Data Governance programs achieve the expected traction in the first year. The learning curve is tough for those new to the concept – with data stewards bearing the brunt of the organization’s expectations for “making things happen.” The pundits, industry experts and Internet community have white papers, blogs, and articles a-plenty providing advice and direction on best practices, things to do and things to avoid, but there exists a void in specific, actionable steps to create a strong foundation. Without these steps, our big ideas and enthusiasm fade in the wake of disappointment and frustration. What’s needed is an approach I call “Pragmatic Data Governance.” Let’s keep the grand plan in our long view but let’s start with some good, solid basics we can build on. I believe Pragmatic Data Governance solutions have some of these characteristics:

• Low cost “must have” tools for Data Governance
• Data Governance service level agreements
• Measuring (and telling leadership about) effectiveness of Data Governance
• Certified data (or what exactly is the data you should certify?)

I’d like to explore how these pragmatic approaches to Data Governance serve as the foundational building blocks for a successful Data Governance program. If you’ve walked this path and have some learnings to share, let me hear from you. Meanwhile, stay tuned for posts on my top four actionable steps to Pragmatic Data Governance.

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