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INTRODUCTION TO DATA GOVERNANCE

DEFINITION

Data governance is a set of roles, processes, policies, metrics, and tools that ensures organisational data is secure, confidential, accurate, accessible, and usable. Organisations use data governance to decide how is data within the organization inputted, stored, handled, accessed, and deleted and who has the authority to do so. It also determines who are accountable to ensure compliance with any data-related regulation. 

NEED FOR DATA GOVERNANCE

As the oft-repeated saying goes: “Data is the new oil.” And, like oil, data must be handled with care to prevent misuse, abuse, and leakage. As per an IBM report, the average cost of a single data breach is estimated to be USD 4.35M. Besides monetary losses, there are reputational damages, fines, etc. 

Data governance has become very critical today as customers, suppliers and governments have realized the potential for harm. Governments are enacting laws to ensure organizations manage their data in a regulated manner and promote trust and accountability 

As part of such compliance, organizations need to establish internal data governance programs. 

BENEFITS OF DATA GOVERNANCE

Trend 1: Data Governance Extends to Customer Journeys 

While there is a cost in establishing proper data governance framework within an organization, organizations can reap benefits too. 

Such benefits include: 

  • Streamlining data management processes across all lines of business to establish standards for Data Engineering and Data Science workflows
  • Improving the productivity of the DataOps teams through clear data lifecycle guidelines that reduce ad hoc approvals
  • Centralised governance committees that can advise and train teams on best practices to adopt in their data products
  • Provide and develop processes for data quality assurance regarding both organizational and third-party data
  • Become compliant with state, national and international data regulations, like, California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA), Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), and General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) 
  • Translate data regulations to actionable security protocols for all data (internal as well as external)
  • Provide regular monitoring and reviewing mechanisms to prevent data governance drift 
  • Support employees, suppliers, and customers through clear and transparent communication regarding the various data initiatives.

DATA GOVERNANCE TRENDS

TREND 1: DATA GOVERNANCE EXTENDS TO CUSTOMER JOURNEYS

Organisations wants to monetise their data and provide meaningful services to customers. However, they are often stymied by lack of cross-organisational data governance, which leads to data silos. Companies enacting data governance framework to mitigate such shortcomings. 

TREND 2: DATA DEMOCRACY AND RISE OF CITIZEN DATA SCIENTIST

Data Scientists must combine their programming skills with domain knowledge to provide the right insights to decision makers. Data Governance is democratising data by enabling simplified and standardised data management across domain. This allows business users leverage their domain expertise to build new data products and customise existing one, without the need to develop programming skills. This is converting data consumers to data scientists. 

TREND 3: DATA PRIVACY AND COMPLIANCE

As various jurisdictions enact data privacy laws, organisations must standardise not only how data collected, accessed, utilised, and safeguarded, but also report such processes to data privacy watchdogs and customers. Data Governance workflows can generate such reports automatically and on schedule, thereby reducing the manual effort needed. 

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