Occupying top-of-mind for many IT and business leaders today is the promise of Big Data/analytics; the potential to deliver significant, positive impact on an organization’s top line. Information governance (IG) has emerged as being pivotal to fully realize the potential. Its importance is highlighted in a recent report from the Institute for Business Value, Analytics: the speed advantage, where IG is listed as one of three capabilities that are foundational to successful use of analytics. One of the reasons was drawn out in another blog post here about the need for scrubbing data to ensure a quality data set is injected into an analytics engine; quality-in, quality-out (QIQO).
It’s great to see information governance getting renewed attention and more interest as an organizational imperative. Historically, IG has been seen as a program providing capabilities to reduce cost and minimize an organization’s exposure to risk. These primarily impact the bottom line and often projects focused in this area hadn’t received the investment or executive attention they need. That is changing and it marks a turning point for IG. It creates the opportunity to justify IG projects in terms that can have direct top-line benefit by supporting/improving a major strategic initiative, Big Data/analytics. If there’s an active initiative underway already within your organization, then gather detail on what it is and its purpose. Determine the impact IG can have on it and leverage that as a way to communicate the value. Better yet, would be to get the group responsible for analytics to include IG as an important component of their work.
Not all companies are pursuing Big Data projects or have one implemented, but that doesn’t mean IG professionals shouldn’t use it as part of their value proposition. There is a tremendous amount of legacy or dark data in organizations already with more being created every day while new sources of data emerge. Establishing a sound IG practice now can provide the foundation capable of supporting analytics initiatives when the organization is ready to pursue them. It creates a better understanding of legacy data and retaining the set that has value (quality). This creates data clarity and allows business the opportunity to see how data assets, legacy and new, can be used within an analytics project.
The bottom line: leverage the top line value that information governance can help to drive.
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