August/September 2018 Edition
As corporations prepare for their 2019 annual budget, many enterprises are concerned with how to prepare for their digital enterprise needs, and how those decisions may need to adhere to corporate and industry governance. Data Dynamics CEO Piyush Mehta, the “Dean of Data,” addressed the specifics on budgeting and governance issues in his recent Mehta-Data© podcast.
Why is governance an issue in data management and migration?
There are many aspects to which data governance is looked at because of the sheer amount of data and the importance of that data in every vertical marketplace. Governance really is encompassed of four key aspects or attributes.
One is availability and the available access to such data for usability. How many people can use the data, and how can it accurately be made available.
The second is content security. Enterprises need to ensure that their data is correct in terms of its content, and such security ensures that those who need to access the data can do such…and only those that should access the data will have access.
This ties to the third area of unstructured data. The largest portion of data growth comes from unstructured data. Most organizations have 60-plus percent of their data today in an unstructured format.
And, the fourth area is, by far, the most rapidly growing aspect of their data infrastructure, that being regulatory issues. Changes in regulatory issues challenge every enterprise relative to how they monitor and maintain these regulatory issues.
How do regulatory issues specifically affect the governance of data management and migration?
Primarily, if looked at from a regulatory standpoint, I believe this is the wrong approach. GDPR in Europe and definitely Sarbanes-Oxley in the US put emphasis on how data is managed and accessed.
An organization really needs to look at data governance more from an internal efficiency standpoint rather than regulations, driving capability in helping it manage its lifecycle. At the end of the day, governance is in place to drive effectiveness and efficiency in the control and management of the data, rather than it being there for administration.
The future of governance security issues are important. But, the challenge is who is accessing data and how.
Does this relate purely to having the proper rights and privileges to access?
As you know, external sources look to pry into data, both personal as well as business confidential information. The major challenge is whether different departments should or should not have access to proprietary and/or personnel information within a company, which is a key aspect challenge of a business.
This is further complicated by mergers and acquisitions, where you have different access points for different records. Making sure that these are not aimlessly transpired so that management and governance access controls can be limited, is beneficial as everyone moves to the hybrid cloud is imperative to every industry.
How does governance relate to such a hybrid cloud scenario?
At the end of the day, you have to make sure that you do have a team of reliable data stewards. These are the people that are going to be responsible for the overall management of the governance, and this could include and should include both management and contribution lines of business, as well as the information technology teams that can drive the technology aspects.
When you take these data stewards and apply the necessary compliance, whether the data sits locally or it is in the public cloud, or maybe a hybrid model, wouldn’t really matter. Because you are now applying the same standards along with the technology and processes required to manage that data.
How are organizations tackling this governance issue in the big picture you just detailed?
As I mentioned, most people are looking at governance in the wrong way, and see it as more regulatory than internal efficiency driven. When people are running a disaster recovery test as a means of governance, it is done to make sure that it passes to avoid any kind of risk relative to the compliance issues from an external governance body.
When they do this, they actually plan out the entire data recovery (DR) process proactively and ahead of time, rather than just flipping a switch. They just want to determine governance compliance.
Yet, the data can be moved to a secondary site while maintaining the same access as before. This should be embraced because it establishes better management rather than rigorous planning, not because it meets regulations.
At the end of the day, when a disaster happens instantaneously or over a period of time, your organization must be ready. Make sure that you are embracing governance from a productivity standpoint rather than a checkbox that needs to be done for regulation’s sake.
How can such solutions for a data management organization help address these challenges relative to scale, both geographically and in terms of sheer data volume?
There are three key pillars for data stewards, the first being the area of compliance, and creating the standards which are the processing element.
Second is the technology element and having software solutions that can scale at a global level to deploy and manage the compliance required around these established standards with tens of billions of files, if not hundreds of petabytes of data.
The third is the ability for your software to meet this type of scalability, which is important. This ties in with the ability to understand and address the security aspects of such.
This availability and accuracy, along with the obvious usability, provides a good technology platform to facilitate governance issues for fiscal and organizational calendar years. And this is where the enterprise budget comes into place.
How can budgeting affect becoming a data enterprise?
The challenge with budgets a continuing game that most large enterprises play. There is never enough money to address things proactively, but always an open checkbook to correct a problem or challenge reactively when such is considered mission-critical or critical.
It is important to budget accurately for people and time by the data stewards, in terms of establishing and maintaining the proper compliance and standards, and then spending on the software and technologies required to automate, manage, and proactively leverage artificial intelligence to drive a proactive approach to governance. The reactive aspect which most organizations use is when infiltration access to data happens most often.
When a problem occurs, whether it is infrastructure-related or people – related process challenge, enterprises often fund an unimaginable amount of money without hesitation. So, I believe this proactive budgeting plan can avoid most reactive issues.
Based upon what you just described, what should an enterprise be doing right now to prepare for 2019 when it comes time to allocating budget items?
I think it’s important to talk to the right constituents and potential partner experts so that they can put the proper team in place and to align the team to make sure that standards are set in accomplishing a proactive governance program. Different software platforms can be researched and reviewed to ensure the proper value and technology is acquired to address reactive and proactive compliance of standards.
Partnerships should be fully tested and proven out in order to ensure the proper scale can be utilized to leverage a 2019 implementation plan. Enterprises should also talk about testing several aspects with available discretionary funds for the rest of 2018 to best determine next year’s budget and solutions acceptability.
How can a company better become a data enterprise without a specific budget allocation?
Small steps can be initiated when initially addressing reactive solutions. It’s hard to deploy them at a global level, but you can talk to companies that offer software platforms which might be tried on a subset of the environment.
It is vital to test these and ensure that such solutions meet or exceed your standards and requirements from a compliance or data governance standpoint to proactively approach the problem in a step-by-step fashion, rather than as a piecemeal conclusion.
Such holistic approaches assist in time and budgetary issues management which can be avoided.
What if people should need additional information about governance and budgeting?
They can find anything online at www.datadynamicsinc.com. We have a ton of information available for them and would be happy to provide further guidance from one of our subject matter experts.
Another quick and easy way is to go to our website at www.datdyn.com, where we have created a survey based on customer responses. What we found is a lot of customers are asking us typical questions that allow and help them to understand where and how they can get to digitalization.
We created the survey right on the top of the website. Take a look, and it can help guide you on the journey, and to how best to digitalize based on the survey responses, and where you’re at in the journey.
If you are interested in moving to the cloud for storage savings and better business analytics, you can get a cost of ownership (TCO) comparison and a list of recommendations by completing a short survey on the Data Dynamics website, www.datadynamicsinc.com for a free assessment.
You can also subscribe to our Soundcloud channel and get access to all podcasts!