Data governance: the right balance for a bimodal strategy

October 22, 2015

Data governance is a must for a successful BI strategy. But how do you ensure it’s a boon, not a bother?
We’ve recently been talking a lot about data governance at TARGIT. For years, we’ve been preaching the need to set data free to employees in every role throughout the organization. To do so properly and securely, companies need strong data governance, which is why the latest version of TARGIT Decision Suite has the most robust data governance capabilities ever.

In many companies, their version of data governance is an IT gatekeeper. And the way I see it, this traditional way of handling data governance—centralized, strict, and secure—is still valid for enterprise multidimensional data warehouses.

But it isn’t right for every organization. It’s inefficient, riddled with unavoidable bottlenecks, and stymies experimentation. In order to promote innovation and experimentation among teams, a new way of handling data governance is needed. A de-centralized, relaxed, creative data governance strategy is necessary for any type of ad-hoc data discovery.

Embracing the centralized and de-centralized

That’s why TARGIT embraces both. TARGIT Decision Suite 2015 was designed with a robust data governance solution that handles both the centralized and de-centralized data governance strategies for companies. TARGIT Director of Professional Services EMEA, Kim Hanmark, wrote recently about the way TARGIT caters to bimodal BI.
A bimodal approach to BI tackles both the necessity of agile, user-friendly analytics and reliability and security of data. Bimodal BI not only facilitates traditional business operation—the classic data warehouse and continuous decision loops—but also discovery and innovation.

When it comes to data governance within TARGIT Decision Suite, administrators can control the TARGIT server and applications for use across the organization from a single control panel, which we call TARGIT Management. Administrators set permissions and control who has access to what data for their everyday analytics use.

In this way, TARGIT caters to the dual demands of IT and business users on either side of TARGIT Management. True to TARGIT’s mission of setting data free to decision-makers throughout the organization, administrators have complete control of critical data without limiting business users’ ability to self-serve. And, as Gartner has reported, along with governed data discovery, self-service is one of the year’s strongest BI themes in the yearly Hype Cycle. 

If users with domain knowledge create new data models that need to be made accessible to the organization, IT or the Business Intelligence Competency Center (BICC) will have the option of promoting the new content so it can be used across the organization.

Users working within TARGIT Data Discoverer now have permission options for sharing and utilizing data throughout the organization from within the tool. IT no longer needs to be involved and there’s no switching between tools.

Administrators also have a better tool to establish which individual users or roles within the company can take what action, with what information, under what circumstances, using what methods. Business users can be granted permission to build new dashboards and visualizations on the data provided to them. Or they can be given more power to add their own data for their own use or the joint use of their team.

Enterprise options within Decision Suite 2015 include configuring a user’s startup analysis and Favorites options, as well as setting permissions for export folders. For administrators, we have included options that make it possible for an administrator to instantly get an overview of a user’s security settings.

Let's have a look.

Ensuring data quality

Data governance is about more than just permissions and settings though. As bimodal continues to grow and an increasing amount of unstructured and semi-structured data from outside traditional data warehouses is being pulled in, data governance must include a strategic, trustworthy method for dealing with data quality. Again I emphasize, this must be done in a way that facilitates both the traditional BI operations with the data warehouse and new data discovery and innovation, without limiting that experimentation.

A great way to facilitate that experimentation is with sandbox analytics, which Kim Hanmark wrote about in his last blog post. To sum it up, Kim suggests producing, experimenting with, and sharing data within small, isolated groups before deciding if that external data is worth cleansing and ultimately adopting for use throughout the organization. A good data governance model enables powerful sandbox analytics.

TARGIT Decision Suite 2015 makes it easier and more secure than ever to enforce quality control of enterprise data, no matter how many users or roles have access. Design your BI strategy with flexibility and mass distribution a priority and leave the security to us.