Data & Intelligence

Bootstrapping Data Governance – Part II

As I mentioned in my earlier post, building the vision for Data Governance happens through multiple meetings, interactions and discussions at various levels. Depending on the company culture and type of industry, progress may end up being faster or slower. Leadership in building the awareness and linking the business issues which can be solved through DG are key strategies to gain support for setting up DG organization.



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Here are some of the key activities that need to happen in building the vision, even if you are getting external help:

  • Identify key initiatives and link them to benefits of DG effectiveness
  • Use the strategic planning meetings / Road Map opportunities to include DG track
  • Name someone capable as Data Steward even if it is a part-time role
  • Gather and Highlight the Data Quality issues and the business impacts


Once you have established support from the Executives, start building the business case using the major initiatives to pay for it. Though establishing the DG seems trivial, it has several levels of complexity. Part of the preparation is to knowing the Data issues, remedies and approaches clearly before launching the DG. Key SME’s and Stewards have to work on collecting the information even if external help is brought in. Ultimately insiders will know what works within the organization.

  • Identifying and getting the support of Key SME’s and stakeholders
  • Current business process and pitfalls (Use Business SME’s/ Leaders)
  • Estimating how much of SME’s time and involvement is needed for DG – for socializing the idea
  • Knowing your Key supporters and potential resistance
  • Keeping as much information ready as possible before even engaging external help
  • Create a plan to keep the DG operating independently with Business in the driving seat
  • IT should be servant leader, take the lead in doing all the grunt work and help DG to make the right decision
  • Build / gather the material for business case using the key initiatives / imperatives which can fund the DG effort
  • Start with specific goals agenda and expand once success / participation rate meets expectations
  • Ultimately the execution is the key – will discuss that in the following posts.

Support & Sponsorship

Once sponsorship and support is secured, swift execution and follow through is a must. Bringing in the external help at this point will be very beneficial. Doing the ground work early on and preparing the needed artifacts, any relevant information for DG and quality in general will greatly help in cutting down the current state and future state development, Road Map and in applying the best practices.

In summary, early ground work is crucial for developing the road map with key initiatives for short term wins and quick ROI. Seasoned managers know the value of ground work and they don’t waste time while the planning is in progress. Also the technology (tools, platform) business case should be built at this point along with establishing the DG. Folding the tools expenses as part of the key initiative is always a winning strategy.

About the Author

Shankar RamaNathan is a Senior Enterprise Architect with 25+ years of experience in successfully developing and implementing IT strategy and Information Governance ( Master Data Management, Metadata Management, Data Quality and Data Governance) programs.

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