Data Democratisation is becoming an increasingly prevalent aspect of CIO’s overall business strategies. The concept empowers individuals across an organisation to access data without engaging technical IT resources. It complements the 21st century mentality of everything on demand 24/7. The rise of business intelligence software has been a significant catalyst for this movement. Previously only technical individuals were capable of creating graphical representations of data on webpages, but advancements in technology have removed this barrier. Data Democratisation facilities faster decision making and management by exception which in turn allows organisations to respond to demand quicker and more efficiently. It also fosters a data driven culture at all operating levels, this can have several benefits including encouraging staff to seek out metadata or allowing frontline staff practice in data driven decision making coaching them for future management or executive roles. However, there are several challenges to overcome before true data democratisation can be achieved.
Most organisations will find their data is siloed; finance data is held in one system, resource data in another etc. Some categories of data have no repository at all and records are spread across multiple tools or spreadsheets with no consistent data model or reference data. Pulling this together into an overall report becomes a colossal task which can take weeks to complete, and the quality of the end result is likely to be sub-standard. Standardising data repositories helps alleviate this. Organisations should consider this as not just a technology and process challenge, but a people one too as behaviours around how, when, and where data is managed need to change.
One area causing apprehension is exposing sensitive data or complex data open to misinterpretation. Not everything should be accessible to everyone, there are a plethora of reasons and regulations why this is the case. Therefore, architects of an organisation’s information management systems need to take this into account. This will mean working closely with HR to standardise job roles and map them to data elements. Only once the full scope of people and data is understood can a solution be designed, built, and implemented. This should include a training plan which ensures staff understand the data they have access to (and don’t have access to) so they can understand the scope and make informed decisions.
To reiterate, implementing data democratisation is not a trivial task and will require investment. CloudCube provides an integrated platform to store operational data in a single location with user role configurations to ensure staff can access the data they are privileged to. Alternatively, our low code solution CloudCubeDNA allows prototyping of new applications to merge data repositories. You can find out more about CloudCube and CloudCubeDNA from Integrated Cloud on the website. Alternatively, you can contact us for more information here.