Every business should consider data as one of the most valuable corporate assets. Improved business decisions. Marketing campaigns. Operational efficiency. Cost savings. All with the goal of increasing revenue and profits.
When it comes to data usage, smaller businesses frequently rely on reports generated within the individual software platforms they use for day-to-day operations.
However, as the business grows, the need to consolidate this data into a centralized, standardized source will arise, necessitating a process known as data management.
The next step? To effectively organize and secure all business data.
The ABCs of Data Management
Data management is the practice of establishing and maintaining a framework for ingesting, storing, mining, and archiving the data necessary for modern business operations.
It acts as the information lifecycle’s spine, enabling businesses to more easily organize and access data gathered across a variety of software solutions.
On the other hand, insufficient data management can result in incompatible data silos, inconsistent data sets, and data quality issues, all of which impair an organization’s ability to run business intelligence (BI) applications.
However, how do you determine the best data management model for your business?
Each business requires a customized data management model to meet its unique requirements. While fine-tuning and finalizing a strategy that works best for a business takes time, these five steps can help you get started.
Identifying Business Objectives
The majority of businesses waste valuable time and resources collecting, storing, and analyzing the incorrect types of data because their data management model does not align with their overall business objectives.
To avoid this, you should answer the following questions:
What are the objectives of my business?
What types of insights and information are required to accomplish these goals?
The answers to these questions will determine the data management model, tools, and governance type.
Creating Solid Data Processes
After you’ve settled on why and how you will use your data, the next step is to determine which processes your data management model will use for collecting, preparing, storing, and distributing the data.
The type of data processes you will use depend on several factors.
First, you need to establish a data source, the type of data you need (structured, unstructured, or a combination), and if the data collection will be done manually or automatically.
After that, you need to identify how you will clean and transform raw data to prepare it for analysis and how to store it afterward (XML, CSV, or relational databases for structured or data lake for unstructured data).
Finding the Right Technology
The third essential step in creating a great data management strategy is identifying the right tools, platforms, or technology solutions you can use to create real-time, up-to-date, and relevant data reports.
Take note; the technology you choose should always be accompanied by compatible hardware and/or software solutions.
Establishing Data Governance
Data governance ensures that data is used correctly and consistently throughout the organization, which is why policies and procedures should be communicated to and understood by owners, stakeholders, and all employees.
Data governance is critical for capitalizing on value generated by analytics, digital, and other transformative opportunities.
While many businesses struggle to get it right, any business can succeed by shifting its mindset away from thinking of data governance in terms of frameworks and policies and strategically embedding it into the way the organization operates daily.
Training and Execution
Oftentimes, the most significant barrier to effective data use is that the organization’s data owners are not data experts.
A critical component of your data management strategy will be providing your team with the knowledge and skills necessary to analyze and comprehend the data.
These five steps all work in unison to provide your company with a well-executed data management model that will help your company gain competitive advantages over its business rivals, both by improving operational effectiveness and enabling better decision-making.
At HICO-Group, we use industry-leading best practices to assist you in matters of business data estate. From ideating a functioning data management model to data warehousing and staff training, our team of Business Intelligence experts can help.
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