Data Governance Tweets

Welcome to what may become the first installment of “Tweeting Data Governance.” The plan is for this to become a quarterly Feature Column on TDAN.com that will highlight recent data governance-related tweets from me and others. Let’s face it, sometimes it would be nice to see the thinking behind those 140 characters. We will also highlight trends and hot topics. Each column will repeat the tweets (rhyming intended). Then we will expand on trends and various topics as they have reverberated through the twitterverse.

This first installment could have been titled “Where’s the biz?” In between the usual Twitter noise, political commentary and (some very funny) cracks on horse meat, we saw a lot of expansion and mention of the role of business-side personnel and a general increase in the interest of business management in data governance the past quarter. Here are some samples:

  • Organizations must accept that 21st century dependence on data assets requires the acceptance and institutionalizing of a #datagovernance program.
  • For any #EIM or #DataGovernance program, don’t forget the naysayers; state a business aligned case with hard dollars to slow down early resistance
  • Want to see eyes roll? Combine the newness of formal #infoassetmanagement with a room of “dubiousness” of biz execs w/o a biz reason
  • Happiness is when the realities of #DataGovernance run into the realities of organizations realizing a need to manage information differently

A brief mention on the role of tools was re-tweeted like crazy. Why is that many IT areas when first confronted with the responsibility of governance, go out and get a tool that does data management? Ditto for business intelligence. Here come big data. Let’s go buy the tools! Woof – when will we learn?

Governance needs to set out the framework the tool will support. If you are thinking of a tool to support data governance, please design your program before you buy something. Just because you can envision a tool would be useful does not mean it’s the first thing you do.

  • You can buy #BI tools or do analytics but w/o control of what goes in or out of BI, you can never be sure it’s right. #DataGovernance

Re-tweets also highlighted the increasing efforts for business management to get its head around data governance (DG) as a business problem.

  • #DataGovernance isn’t about lots of new stuff; it’s building care & feeding of data into what you do today
  • Tie #DG failure to wrong mindset; orgs doing #IAM hire consultants & buy tools but fall short when time to really change daily usage of info
  • A #DataGovernance program really has one clear goal — to disappear & treat info like other valuable assets
  • Real #DataGovernance doesn’t exist in and of itself; it’s about treating information like the valuable asset it is
  • Organizations must accept that 21st century dependence on data assets requires the acceptance and institutionalizing of a #datagovernance program.
  • Frame a #datagovernance program in a comprehensible manner-Experience shows that not everyone “gets it”.
  • Want to see eyes roll? Combine the newness of formal #infoassetmanagement with a room of “dubiousness” of biz execs w/o a biz reason
  • Happiness is when the realities of #DataGovernance run into the realities of organizations realizing a need to manage information differently
  • You are not designing a separate, new #DataGovernance “org”; you are putting functionality into place within the existing organization

I’m not the only one tweeting on data governance. Here are some tweets of note. I guess we can call this “Gee, wish I had said that” category. Several of these lead to good links with profound material. Two are from Stijn at Collibra, one from Sunil Soares.

Stijn Christiaens ‏@stichris

  • @gartner says #DataGovernance is “the new black”, and recognized as essential by the Chief Data people.http://blogs.gartner.com/svetlana-sicular/data-governance-is-the-new-black/ … @collibra

Bob Seiner @Rseiner

  • “Business Glossary” is backbone of #data governance … @collibra

Sunil Soares ‏@SunilSoares1

  • See my blog The Virtues of Starting #DataGovernance with a few attributes http://www.dataversity.net/the-virtues-of-kick-starting-your-data-governance-program-with-a-small-set-of-attributes/ … @Dataversity

Just so we don’t take ourselves too seriously, Gwen Thomas had this observation:

Gwen Thomas @gwenthomasdgi

  • @gwenthomasdgiIncredulous at astronomers thrilled by following a quickly-moving, faint dot of light. Oh. Just got why some think #datagovernance boring!
  • For any #EIM or #DataGovernance program, don’t forget the naysayers; state a business aligned case with hard dollars to slow down early resistance
  • Still getting calls from prospects who don’t know why they fail at #DataGovernance; they refuse to embrace fundamental process chges
  • The implied hierarchy defined for #DataGovernance “organizations” is really a communications framework.
  • How effective are your #DataGovernance processes? Use metrics to monitor progress and collect successes to leverage
  • Orgs good at saying #DataGovernance essential but lack follow-thru. Tools often usurp needed process/behavior changes. #silverbullet?
  • Experience provides learning and drives behavior change. Project artifacts and management commands don’t work without it #ataGovernance
  • You can buy #BI tools or do analytics but w/o control of what goes in or out of BI, you can never be sure it’s right. #DataGovernance
  • Mr. Exec: If you want to survive the data storm, do #DataGovernance now. It isn’t about being a data geek; it’s imperative for success

If #DataGovernance is misunderstood, it leads to a tendency to jam it in another box on the IT org chart and this is often a fatal mistake.

In the end we are modifying behavior and business processes to think more clearly about the care and feeding of data #DataGovernance.

There needs to be a conscious effort to sustain “sustaining” DataGovernance. Otherwise DG will fall into the same traps of all previous data management efforts. That is why the discipline of organization change management is key. But the DG stakeholders also need to start right away. It is nearly fatal to DG to train various groups to to something and then have nothing to do.

This activity is the first real interaction with the actual areas subject to DG. One concept that cannot be integrated into tasks list or sample work products is the need to observe the actions and interaction of the DG team, stakeholders and governed parties. To be very clear, somewhere along the way there will be eye-rolling, misunderstanding, or missed expectations. There needs to be a keen awareness of what is going on behind the scenes and a sensititvity to what is really happening versus what is desired to happen.

Lastly, the various programs and projects being governed need to be monitored for the effectiveness of the DG processes. Frequent collection of metrics and successes of the EIM-related projects are essential.

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