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what is data governance

Well managed, high quality data can truly support meaningful decision making for organisations, which can have a great impact on their bottom line. Discover Data Governance and why every organisation needs it.

What is data governance?

Data Governance is the set of processes, policies, standards, and roles responsible for managing data throughout its lifecycle in an organisation. It ensures that data is managed and used in an appropriate, consistent, and efficient manner, which is critical for making informed business decisions.

In recent years due to the growing volume of data generated by organisations (for mind-blowing reference, predictions estimate the world will generate 181 zettabytes of data by 2025!) data governance has become increasingly important. This data can be used to make informed decisions, but only if it is of high quality and managed appropriately. Data Governance helps to ensure that data is consistent, reliable, and secure, which is essential for making effective decisions.

What are the benefits of data governance?

  • Improved quality of data

By establishing a set of policies, procedures and standards for managing data, accuracy, consistency and reliability of data can be improved. 

  • A common understanding of data

Data governance can help ensure that everyone within an organisation is using the same definitions and standards for data. This can reduce the risk of confusion, errors and misinterpretation.

  • Increased trust in data

Ensuring that data is properly managed and protected and used in an ethical and compliant manner will increase user trust in it.

  • Improved data management

Organisations are able to better manage their data, reduce duplication and generally make it more efficient. 

  • Consistent compliance

Data governance can assist organisations comply with regulations, regulators and any clients that require proper management of sensitive information. 

Data governance in the cloud

As with any data in an organisation, processes and practices for data management regardless of its location are required if you want to embrace quality data governance. Benefits of properly implementing data governance in a cloud computing environment include:

  • easy scalability for data storage requirements
  • improved security and privacy
  • cost savings
  • increased collaboration and accessibility  

It’s important to note that Data Governance in the cloud is not a one-time process, but rather a continuous effort to maintain and improve the management of data. Organisations must regularly review and update their policies and procedures to ensure they align with changes in technology, regulations, and business needs.

Who’s responsible for data governance?

It’s vital that everyone in an organisation has a clear understanding of what data governance is and their role within it. The following key people are generally responsible for data governance:

  • Chief data officer (CDO)

A CDO is responsible for overseeing the data governance strategy for the organisation and ensuring that company data is managed, protected and used in compliance with legal and ethical standards.

  • Data owners

Individuals or departments within a company that have control over specific types of data and are responsible for defining and implementing policies for its use are data owners. 

  • Data stewards

Individuals responsible for maintaining policies established by data owners are sometimes referred to as data stewards. Their role is to ensure the data is properly classified, stored and maintained and that data access and usage is consistent with company policy.

Types of data governance tools

The following tools will assist in creating sound structures for your company data:

  • Data cataloguing

A central repository of information about the organisation’s data assets is known as the data catalogue. It includes a running record of the data, its definition, structure and usage.

  • Visualisation

This tool helps organisations better understand and manage their data assets by presenting data in a graphic format. Data becomes more user-friendly in this format and can enable opportunities to be identified for improvement in data quality, security and compliance. 

  • Data lineage

Data lineage provides a complete and accurate record of the history and movement of data from its origin to its current state. This tool helps organisations to understand how data is transformed, moved, and used over time and to track the relationships between different data assets. 

  • Threat detection

Organisations can identify potential security threats to their data assets and prevent unauthorised access or misuse of sensitive data. Automated tools and processes that monitor and  analyse data access patterns and trigger alerts in the event of any suspect activity. 

How to get into Data Analytics

At Academy Xi, we offer flexible study options in Data Analytics that will suit your lifestyle and training needs, giving you the perfect foundation for your future in data modelling.

 Whether you’re looking to upskill or entirely transform your career path, we have industry designed training to provide you with the practical skills and experience needed.

If you have any questions, our experienced team is here to discuss your training options. Speak to a course advisor and take the first steps in your Data Analytics journey.