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How to Avoid Big Data Mistakes

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Looking for a way to keep your customers happy and feeling safe, your bosses relaxed and confident, and the rest of your company’s teams protected from major mistakes? Just as a solid accounting system ensures and demonstrates that a business is being well managed, a data governance program is a necessary element of any business today that deals with data. And that’s basically all businesses.

Companies today are starting to really understand that, according to Donna Burbank, Managing Director of Global Data Strategy and a speaker at the Interop ITX event in Las Vegas in May, a vendor-neutral conference for IT practitioners and leaders. Burbank told InformationWeek in an interview that data governance is getting more attention and respect from the business side of companies today, and that’s a good thing.

Donna Burbank

Donna Burbank

“Companies are finally starting to ‘get’ data, for lack of a better term,” she told me. “They understand how data affects their business models.” Companies such as Amazon and Uber are highly visible examples of companies that are really data-driven, and many others are following their examples because data is important, whether it is big data or traditional data.

“Governance is really your accounting department for data,” Burbank said. When governance is done well, it’s really based on collaboration around data. For instance, everyone has to agree on how we calculate total revenue for North America. In terms of data, everyone must agree on how we define North America. Business leaders today are now recognizing that such definitions are important to ensure quality data, and quality data is important to a strong modern business. Data governance is getting a new level of respect from business leaders beyond the IT department.

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