Governance helps perfect big data initiatives

Sometimes, it can seem as if for every trend piece in the business or technology sectors celebrating the virtues of big data, there is another one equally dedicated to pointing out its flaws. Indeed, the supporters and detractors of big data and analytics initiatives are notably vociferous in equal measure, and amid all of that chaos, it can be difficult for those who are considering implementing these tools – but aren't yet sure – to determine the best course of action.

Narrow focus and other major problems
VentureBeat recently published an article falling squarely into the problem-highlighting camp. The piece stated that data siloing is a major issue among many organizations that have implemented business intelligence and analytics initiatives without the proper preparation, software or personnel experience to do so. This may stem from over-emphasis of what some refer to as the 3 V's of big data – volume, veracity and variety. Companies can get carried away with the possibilities of these tools while simultaneously failing to develop the right strategies for their best possible application. 

A survey conducted by the research firm CompTIA made it clear that data siloing and other issues symptomatic of a poor approach to information management are quite prevalent in numerous businesses. Among the survey's 1,000 respondents, 52 percent reported a moderate amount of problematic data silos, while 29 percent stated that a great deal of their data was siloed. Additionally, about 75 percent of them believed that they had developed "shadow data repositories" – where staff members were keeping their own stores of work-related data unconnected to the business' information stores, which can cause problems.

Governance can come to the rescue
The fairly common presence of the issues mentioned above is indicative of a clear need for companies to have better oversight of their data. This can be achieved by implementing a comprehensive governance policy, so that information is regulated across all segments of a business for increased organizational advantage.

According to SmartDataCollective, a major part of this will have to involve the cooperation of IT personnel and all other members of a company's staff. If IT departments and the sections of companies more dedicated to boosting the bottom line can't work together, the right level of data accountability can't be achieved, and businesses with data-related problems will be less likely to find the solutions they need.

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