Top 9 Data Governance Best Practices

Data governance is the process of managing and protecting the availability, integrity, and security of an organization’s data. It is a critical component of any data management strategy and can help organizations to avoid costly data breaches, ensure compliance with regulations, and improve the overall quality and value of their data. In this post, we will share the top 9 data governance best practices that organizations should implement to ensure the effective management and protection of their data.

Not sure what Data Governance is? Check out the AI Glossary entry on Data Governance

Define your data governance objectives and policies

The first step in implementing effective data governance is to define your objectives and policies. This includes determining what data is important to your organization, how that data should be collected, stored, and used/accessed, identifying the roles and responsibilities of those who manage and access the data, and outlining the procedures and controls that will be put in place to protect the data.

Establish a data governance team

To effectively manage and protect your data, it is essential to establish a dedicated data governance team. This team should be responsible for implementing and enforcing your data governance policies, monitoring compliance, and identifying and addressing any data-related issues that arise.

Implement data quality controls

Ensuring the quality of your data is essential to its effectiveness and value. After all, poor quality data can lead to misinformed decision making potentially negatively impacting your company with misguided decisions and lost revenue opportunities. To make sure you have good quality data, you should implement data quality controls, such as data validation, data cleansing, and data standardization. These controls can help to ensure that your data is accurate, complete, and consistent.

Implement data security controls

Protecting your data from unauthorized access or breaches is critical. If your data is violated, you’re going to have major issues including upset customers, potential fines, and bad press. To make sure your data is protected, you should implement data security controls such as encryption, access controls, and data backup and recovery procedures.

Implement data access controls

Ensuring that only authorized individuals have access to your data is crucial. To do this  you need to implement data access controls. This includes setting up user accounts and permissions, monitoring access to the data, and setting up audit trails to track data access and changes.

Implement data retention and destruction policies

To ensure that your data is not kept longer than necessary, you should implement data retention and destruction policies. These policies should outline how long data should be kept, when it should be destroyed, and who is responsible for data destruction.

Monitor compliance

To ensure that your data governance policies are actually being followed, you should monitor compliance. This includes regular audits and reviews of your data governance processes and procedures, as well as monitoring access to and changes to your data.

Continuously improve

Data governance is an ongoing process that requires continuous monitoring and improvement as necessary. This includes regularly reviewing and updating your data governance policies and procedures, as well as staying informed about new regulations and best practices.

Communicate effectively

Effective communication is critical to the success of your data governance efforts. This includes clearly communicating your data governance policies and procedures to all stakeholders, as well as regularly providing updates and addressing any concerns. 

Data governance is a critical component of any effective data management strategy. By implementing these 9 best practices, organizations can ensure the effective management and protection of their data, avoid costly data breaches, ensure compliance with regulations, and improve the overall quality and value of their data. Data governance is an ongoing process that requires continuous improvement and effective communication.

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