The Road to Data Governance Maturity: Where Are We?

Yesterday, we released a comprehensive report analyzing “The State of Data Governance Maturity.” Based on results from more than 200 people who have taken Kalido’s Data Governance Maturity Assessment, the report highlights the issues we find hindering the success of data governance programs. We’ve grouped those issues under three headlines.

  • Business engagement is spotty.
  • Data management and governance is a business process in its own right.
  • Use of appropriate technology might be a leading indicator of data governance maturity.

Frankly, some of what we validated was pretty intuitive, and we found what we (and likely you) suspect. But speculation is a lot less interesting than validation with quantitative evidence. Through the next couple weeks, I’ll take each of our three headlines and examine what the data tells us about each.

At Kalido we believe that positive impacts on business performance are the real value of data governance.  So we’re acutely interested in how well the “business” and “data” professionals are collaborating to define and find that value. We’ll dive into that in subsequent posts, but in this case it makes sense to start the story with a little bit of framing and some macro results.

Defining Maturity

Data Governance Maturity Stages

Kalido Data Governance Maturity Stages

After much research, debate and inputs from a cross-industry advisory board and industry analysts we established a four-tier data governance maturity model. Our intent was to group behavioral, technology, process and organization attributes based on how they raised the value of data as an asset. Starting with a view of data as a by-product of a transaction, and ultimately arriving at a spot where it is viewed and treated as a strategic asset, we built fairly prescriptive views of the Technology, Process and Organization attributes at each level. The four tiers form the evaluation criteria for the survey results.

Survey Results at a Macro Level

Like many good stories, this one starts with a 100K foot view of the landscape to set some context. The results below show some macro trends-maybe better defined as outcomes-of the Technology, Process and Organization levers companies are (or are not) throwing to move to higher levels of data governance maturity.

It’s clear that improvement across all three of the major areas – organization, process and technology – is much needed. Based on our experience, the survey results and interviews with business people, data professionals, analysts, consultants and other practitioners we have identified four common threads:

  • Data governance improves information that fuels business process performance gains
  • Aligning data and business processes metrics creates a business case for data governance
  • Collaboration is indicative of mature data governance
  • Sustainable data governance emerges when policies shape behavior

In the report, we dive deep into each of these common threads, look at what the data tells us and provide recommendations on how to move your data governance program further.

If I had to summarize the first result in a headline, it might be “Companies are establishing teams to be accountable for data governance, but are not equipping them with processes and technologies that drive success.”

Overall Maturity Level Results

Overall Maturity Level Results

In our report we detail three compelling reasons to embed data governance as a cultural attribute.

  • Make more money
  • Save more money
  • Avoid compliance headaches and penalties

Despite compelling reasons for governing data as an asset, Kalido’s research shows that not that many organizations are there, and sadly many aren’t even thinking about it. Whether through lack of a burning platform, organization (or organizational will), or lack of tools companies ignore this elephant in the room. Over the next week or two, I’ll look at some of the data that aligns with our three headlines above and share some thoughts about why now is a good time to make data governance part of your continuous improvement initiatives.

If you’re interested in reading the entire 25-page report, which not only analyzes the results, but also provides experience-based recommendations and outlines a different way to think and approach data governance, you can download it here.

In the meantime, here are some of the high level results, parsed out by geography, company size and industry.

Maturity Levels by Geography

Maturity Levels by Geography

Maturity Levels by Industry

Maturity Levels by Industry

Maturity Levels by Company Size

Maturity Levels by Company Size

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