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Here’s Why Your Digital Transformation Will Fail Without Effective Data Governance

24 Jun, 2020  |  By PeerNova   |  Published in Articles,

Digital Transformation and Effective Data Governance

For an enterprise today, the term “digital transformation” extends well beyond the generic definition of “going paperless”. Digital transformation improves how enterprises efficiently utilize technology, people, and processes to create new business models and revenue streams while meeting evolving customer, stakeholder, and regulator expectations. The need for staying ahead of nimble competitors, recalibrating quickly, and identifying transformative opportunities early, makes accelerated digital innovation a top priority.

According to IDC and CIO.com, 40 percent of all technology spending goes toward digital transformation, with enterprises spending in excess of $2 trillion through 2019 and beyond. As a result, CIOs are making significant organizational changes by re-training employees and setting up innovation labs to experiment with disruptive and emerging technologies. But first, these same CIOs must update their data management strategies by implementing an effective data governance framework that supports their digital transformation efforts.

Data Governance is the Foundation of Digital Transformation

As the foundation of digital transformation, data governance needs to be the driving force behind the evolving people, processes, and technologies. The majority of transformative initiatives revolve around an enterprise’s most critical asset—their data – and how it is managed.

Data is often the biggest hindrance when implementing new technologies, as it must be correct, consistent, complete, and timely at any point across the enterprise. In order to identify potential digital transformation opportunities, improve customer expectations, and act quickly on business trends, firms must be able to ensure the quality of the data providing insights and analytics. Only when a solid framework is in place can firms fully embrace and benefit from the potential of new technologies and digital transformation opportunities. Having disruptive, clean technology means nothing with outdated, poor quality data.

Benefits of Effective Data Governance on Digital Transformation

Data governance and digital transformation go hand-in-hand. Neither can exist without the other. An effective data governance framework can provide the following benefits to further any transformative initiatives.

Improved Data Quality
Currently, data is acquired from and stored in disparate systems, applications, and workflows across the enterprise. Each of these data sources consists of scattered, outdated, and duplicate records, causing immense disarray and disconnection. Messy data is stored in legacy systems that are unable to keep up with technological advances.

The siloed, fragmented enterprise landscape is the number-one cause of data quality challenges. When data is incorrect, inconsistent, or incomplete, decision-makers may make long-term plans or short-term decisions based on faulty data. Additionally, firms have incorrect controls on their data and may submit incorrect reports to regulators, resulting in exorbitant fines and penalties. Recently, Commerzbank was fined $38M for failing to have proper controls on their data (Source). When implementing new technologies, the process may be hindered due to data not being clean or “good” enough. Firms are unable to move forward and build out their business with low-quality data, as it quickly trickles down the enterprise pipeline.

Digital transformation should unify siloed people, processes, and technologies. Effective data governance bridges the fragmented enterprise landscape. It implements processes and rules to ensure that poor data quality is perpetually identified and addressed. Instead of manually fixing the actual error, users can reconcile the process or rule that caused the data issue in the first place. Having clean, organized data puts firms in a better position to create and adopt new technologies.

Better Business Decisions
As discussed in our previous article, enterprise silos continue to keep businesses process-defined, rather than being data-driven. With disparate systems, firms cannot gain a holistic view of the data and metrics that fuel their decision-making. Incomplete or inaccurate data results in incorrect insights and poor business decisions that negatively affect operations and the bottom line. How can a firm make a decision based on inaccurate data?

Effective data governance breaks down enterprise silos, allowing business users to gain end-to-end (E2E) visibility of their data, insights, and trends for better decision-making. By having an E2E view, firms can predict and react to trends, implementing efficient and newer technologies for their employees and clients.

Competitive Advantage
For startups and firms with large IT budgets, it can be easy to maintain a competitive advantage. However, for smaller enterprises or those with inflexible spending, being able to spot trends and act on transformational possibilities before competitors are key to being ahead of the curve.

With an effective data governance framework in place, enterprises can be assured that they are directing their digital transformation efforts and investment to those initiatives that will be most fruitful and differentiating. They are also able to use best in class solutions from others for those items that are commodities. This is because they are able to see across their data as the underlying environment is evolving. They are even able to see across the data as they replace legacy solutions with new ones and ensure the outcome is correct.

While jumping into digital transformation initiatives, enterprises must solidify their data governance strategy to ensure E2E visibility and ongoing data quality. Any digital transformation project will certainly fail if the underlying data isn’t up to par.

PeerNova’s Cuneiform Platform: Empowering Digital Transformation

PeerNova’s Cuneiform Platform is an active data governance tool that empowers enterprises to unlock their data, increase efficiency, and ultimately, identity and discover the most promising digital transformation opportunities.

Through automation and ongoing data quality checks across the enterprise landscape, the solution not only remedies existing data issues but also continuously manages and monitors data throughout its entire lifecycle. With E2E visibility, people can gain clearer insights, identify trends, and make better decisions. Ultimately, enterprises can act or react proactively to extraordinary circumstances more quickly, implementing new technologies and processes to help further their business.

Additionally, PeerNova’s Cuneiform Platform enables API-driven hybrid cloud adoptions for greater interoperability for the exchange of data, metadata, and rules. Integrations and use of proven data simplify and progress digital transformation efforts.

By unifying the siloed landscape and providing an E2E view across the enterprise, the platform syncs enterprise knowledge and reduces manual efforts for faster root-cause analysis. With increased efficiency and lowered cost, substantial time and money can be refocused on discovering and implementing digital transformation initiatives.

If you are interested in learning more about how PeerNova’s Cuneiform Platform can help further your enterprise’s digital transformation efforts, please be sure to get in touch with us and request a demo today.

Boulton, Clint. “What Is Digital Transformation? A Necessary Disruption.” CIO, CIO, 31 May 2019, Link
Jones, Huw. “UK fines Commerzbank $47 million for lax money laundering controls.” Link

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