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Best Data Governance Tools Gartner

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The new face of data governance has three key pillars: observability, discovery, and security. Image courtesy of Monte Carlo.

Data teams serious about governance need to embrace technologies that lean into the distributed, scalable nature of the cloud AND the distributed nature of modern data teams. To get there, we need to reframe our approach across three different pillars of governance: observability, discovery, and security.


Instead of putting together a holistic approach to address unreliable or inaccurate data, teams often tackle data quality on an ad hoc basis. Much in the same way DevOps applies observability to software, data observability platforms give data teams the ability to monitor, alert for, root cause, fix, and even prevent data issues in real-time.

Data observability refers to an organizationâs ability to fully understand the health of the data in their system, and supplements data discovery by ensuring that the data youâre surfacing is trustworthy at all stages of its life cycle. Like its DevOps counterpart, data observability uses automated monitoring, alerting, and triaging to identify and evaluate data quality and discoverability issues, leading to healthier pipelines, more productive teams, and happier customers. Some of the best solutions will also offer the ability to create custom rules and circuit breakers.

Security and access

What Is The Difference Between Data Governance And Data Management

The difference between the two is that a data governance tool takes a holistic, overarching view of the data lifecycle from a business perspective, while data management is more concerned with the tools, services, and repositories used to handle that data.

Simply put, data governance software deals with your data strategy, while management solutions deal with tactics.

How To Run A Successful Selection Process

In order to get the right data management software, you first need to establish the right data management processes. To do that, youll need to evaluate your current Data Maturity, and make a plan to improve it. Youll also need to prioritise the data management work your organisation needs to avoid falling into the trap of trying to boil the ocean.

A better approach to picking the top data governance tool:

  • Establish the outcome you are trying to achieve for your organisation
  • This should not be we want to pick the best data governance tool, or we want to treat data as an Enterprise asset
  • Instead align your outcome to a Strategic business priority. We will deliver high quality data that supports the objective of growing market share in Vietnam by 7% in 2021, delivering $8,700,000 in new revenue is better
  • If youre selecting a Data Lineage tool, do not say we will automatically produce lineages for all our CDEs this has no value attached. Instead say we will reduce the next MAS compliance audit cost by $3m SGD.
  • Design and change the organisational structures so you can achieve the outcome:
  • Data Governance is an exercise in Change Management, youll need to change the way your team works to get it right
  • You will need a Data Governance Operating Model. This will establish the right Data Owners and Data Stewards
  • Youll need Data Governance Principles and Policies. These set the rules your team must follow, and are essential to your success.
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    The Goal Of Data Governance

    Data governance aims at creating policies that define ownership, roles, delegations, and policies of data by involving stakeholders from various levels and departments in the organization. The goal is to bring a unified understanding of each silo of data in the system by creating common data definitions and formats. Ultimately, when done right, data governance aims at enabling consistent and confident decisions based on trustworthy data assets.

    Tl dr: The Five Trends

    2020 Gartner Magic Quadrant for Data Science and Machine Learning ...
    • The modern data stack went mainstream, featuring a full range of unprecedented fast, flexible, cloud-native tools. The problemmetadata has been left out.
    • Data teams are more diverse than ever, leading to chaos and collaboration overhead. Context is key, and metadata is the solution.
    • Data governance is being reimagined from top-down, centralized rules to bottom-up, decentralized initiativeswhich requires a similar reimagining for metadata platforms.
    • As metadata is becoming big data, the metadata lake has infinite use cases for today and tomorrow.
    • Passive metadata systems are being scrapped in favor of active metadata platforms.

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    The Diverse Humans Of Data

    A few years ago, only the IT team would get their hands dirty with data.

    However, todays data teams are more diverse than ever before. They include data engineers, analysts, analytics engineers, data scientists, product managers, business analysts, citizen data scientists, and more. Each of these people has their own favorite, equally diverse data toolseverything from SQL, Looker, and Jupyter to Python, Tableau, dbt, and R.

    This diversity is both a strength and a struggle.

    All of these people have different tools, skill sets, tech stacks, work styles, and ways of approaching a problem Essentially, they each have a unique data DNA. More diverse perspectives mean more opportunities for creative solutions and out-of-the-box thinking. However, it also usually means more chaos within collaboration.

    This diversity also means that self-service is no longer optional. Modern data tools need to be intuitive for a wide range of users with a wide range of skill sets. If someone wants to bring data into their work, they should be able to easily find the data they need without having to ask an analyst or file a request.

    Read more about the humans of data.

    What Is The Bi Maturity Model

    The business intelligence maturity model is a five-level scale that tells you how mature your data and analytics strategy is. There are actually multiple business intelligence maturity models , but one of the top models is definitely Gartners.

    Gartners business intelligence maturity model, from How to Accelerate Analytics Adoption When Business Intelligence Maturity Is Low

    The low end of the business intelligence maturity model looks like this: your data is scattered across different, disconnected spreadsheets and documents. Employees may want information, but they ask for it in haphazard, one-off fashion. Also, no ones in charge of data governance.

    The high end of the BI maturity model looks like this: you have a CDO , or at least someone in charge of wrangling your data. Your data is organized and accessible because your data sources are connected to a business intelligence software program. Employees check the data when they want to make any decision, so much so that data drives decision-making.

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    Build A Virtual Bi Team

    Whats a virtual BI team? One that does work as needed.

    A virtual team is organized around set goals, rather than set roles. Instead of a definite business intelligence department, which would take time and money to assemble, a virtual BI team is made up of stakeholders from across the companys pre-existing departments, on both the business and IT side.

    Your virtual team exists to set up your BI strategy, then get it off the ground. Their purpose is to make sure your data and analytics program meets the needs of the companys departments, so that employees will be willing and able to act in a data-driven manner.

    Where the training wheels come off: Your virtual team should not become a new center of power, or department. Instead, their goal should be to build a strategy that will encourage grass-roots interest and involvement in analytics.

    To that end, when you go to shop for a business intelligence software program, make sure to look for one with self-service capabilities. Self-service means that any self in the company, regardless of technological knowledge, can use the program. Check YouTube, product forums, and customer reviews to find out if the program seems easy to use. If the software has a free trial version, download that and play around.

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    Which Data Governance Maturity Models Should You Use

    Gartner Digital Execution Scorecard, Explained

    Data governance maturity models help you measure and understand how well you manage your data. When you have a clear understanding of your data governance, youâre better able to understand how you are or are not meeting goals, what steps you need to take to improve data management overall, and how you need to tailor data approaches to each team and project.

    There are almost as many data governance maturity models as there are use cases for data. If you already use a maturity model to measure your data capabilities, itâs best to adjust that framework and apply it to your data governance to keep things consistent.

    If, however, youâre starting from the ground level, you can choose from one of the many maturity assessments published by reputable vendors, each of which features a slightly different emphasis:

    • IBM& Deloitte focus on process characterization across projects and enterprise levels and use the CMMI Instituteâs Data Management Maturity model.
    • DataFlux focuses on people, risk, process, reward, technology adoption, and business capabilities.
    • Dattamza focuses on process, technology capabilities, managed risk, financials, and people management.
    • EDM Council focuses on the maturity of an organizationâs structure, its policies and guidelines, and funding.
    • Kalidofocuses on the value of data as an enterprise asset and the risks and rewards of how itâs managed.

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    The 2020 Gartner Magic Quadrant For Data Quality Solutions

    Throughout the year, IT consulting firm Gartner releases their research and findings regarding a variety of market trends, in the form of Magic Quadrants. These reports highlight the top vendors in the field for different categories, along with their strengths and cautions, providing insights to key decision makers.

    Just like others Magic Quadrants, the 2020 Gartner Magic Quadrant for Data Quality Solutions has been eagerly anticipated by organizations and clients alike, shedding light on top innovators in the field and what we can anticipate in terms of new solutions in the coming year.

    Understanding The Importance Of Data Governance Maturity Model

    Data Governance is a paradigm for provisioning policies, best procedures, and practices on an enterprises structured or unstructured data here to help in managing the entire data lifecycle.

    With the selection of a proper governance maturity model, a company covers every aspect of its data & information usage.

    Data governance supports a company by magnifying its value, contemplating security-related risks, and cost-cutting trends.

    A data governance maturity model is a framework for administrating and setting out the rules on how to treat data as an asset.

    Data governance maturity ensures sound decision making and treats data within an organization as an asset from its inception to obliteration.

    Data handling is done with sound data governance principles, deep-seated, and application. The model adaption is based on the established capability maturity model integration to the data governance context.

    There is a general Capability Maturity Model with multiple data governance aspects that can be applied to many other processes as well. Maturity here means the degree of optimization done in the process by improving the given level/steps in the process.

    The model improves the processes and structures of the governing data. CMM is based on a process model.

    A process model is an arrangement of structured practices defining characteristics of productive methods, proven to be effective by experience.

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    Best Practices For Maximizing Data Management Efficiency

    In 2020, global spending on cloud data services reached $312 billion. In 2022, Gartner estimates that this number will rise to a staggering $482 billion. This immense increase proves that the migration to and adoption of cloud platforms is the bona fide standard for contemporary information services and analysis.

    With more data accumulating across decentralized cloud platforms, a larger burden is placed on the data teams tasked with managing it. As the cloud continues growing in scale and popularity, organizations need to find sustainable solutions that alleviate this undue stress and keep pace with evolving data trends.

    In the new report, Predicts 2022: Data Management Solutions Embrace Automation and Unification, Gartner analysts examine the impacts of accelerating cloud adoption on the data management landscape. Their analysis identified two overarching solutions that will drive a more sustainable data future: automation of processes and unification of data management components. By pursuing automation and unification, Gartner believes that data teams will be able to efficiently match the evolution of data, while simultaneously deriving significant ROI and value from their data and cloud investments.

    Open Source Data Catalog Software

    Talend Data Integrity and Governance: Trusted Data for Everyone ...

    Organizations can also consider various open source data catalog tools. Many of them were developed by enterprises trying to build a more efficient and effective technology to help address their own data cataloging challenges. Some of the top open source options include the following tools:

    • Amundsen. This data discovery and metadata engine was created by Lyft to help increase the productivity of data scientists and other users in its complex data infrastructure. The ride sharing company released the tool as an open source technology in 2019.
    • Apache Atlas. The Atlas software includes data catalog, metadata management and data governance features. It was started by former big data platform vendor Hortonworks, initially for use in Hadoop clusters, and was handed off to the Apache Software Foundation in 2015.
    • DataHub. LinkedIn’s data team created this metadata search and discovery tool to help internal users understand the context of data, rearchitecting and expanding on an earlier tool called WhereHows. DataHub became open source in 2020.
    • Metacat. This federated metadata discovery and exploration tool was to simplify data discovery, data preparation and data science workflows in its big data environment. The technology was made open source in 2018.

    Next Steps

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    Data Governance Software Overview

    Data governance software allows organizations to organize, manage, and protect sensitive information effectively. It can automate audits and data capture, improve workflows, and prove compliance.

    Data governance software can integrate with other data governance tools and business intelligence solutions to monitor access privileges and encrypt sensitive datasets. These software solutions often include analytics features for discovery, remediation, and reporting.

    Data governance–also known as data stewardship–ensures proper data maintenance per industry standards and laws. Data governance software makes it easy to apply changes and enforce standards universally. It offers privacy and security features, such as securing personally identifiable information and personal health information .

    Data governance occurs across all lifecycle stages of data management, including data collection, retention, quality, classification, standardization, compliance, usage, auditing, security, and archiving. Data governance software helps organizations establish a consistent framework to know what data they own, why the information is used, and how to put that data to work. Companies can standardize policies, naming conventions, and backup schedules–preventing data silos and data loss.

    Data governance software can manage many data libraries, including:

    • personal computers and private networks

    • clouds and databases

    Why Is This Approach A Better Way To Choose A Data Governance Tool

    Having established a great data governance business case youre then in the position to design the right operating model. One of the major causes of failure in data governance projects comes from putting the wrong people in charge of the project. Data governance is not an IT function. Do not appoint IT roles as Data Owners . The business creates the data, they need to own its quality and meaning. To engage them in this role youll use the dollar benefits in your business case to prove the value of this work.

    With the team in place and on-board about their new role, you can design workflows. Before you select a data governance tool you need to ensure these workflows are operating properly. Start your journey using excel, then look at where the pain-points are for the business to identify your tool requirements.

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    Data Governance Needs To Be Automated

    Data governance processes used to be conducted manually. Yet, data is alive and processes change every hour. Whatâs more, data volumes managed by organizations make it practically impossible to track data assets manually. It would mean maintaining metadata for 10+ fields for thousands of tables manually. With current data volumes, it would mean hiring a full team just to work on data governance issues. For this reason, itâs time to turn towards automated ways of orchestrating data governance. Automated data governance tools take 10 min to set up on your cloud data warehouse , and minimizes the fields that have to be maintained manually

    Define Your Maturity Levels

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    For doing an information governance maturity assessment, you need to determine the maturity levels that makes most sense for you based on your program scope. The above maturity models often contain good descriptions of each level. As example, this is how the MIKE2 model describes the different information management maturity levels:

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    Useful And Practical Data

    Proper implementation and practice of improved data standards impacts the entire enterprise-wide data lifecycle. Data is made to be useful and fit-for-purpose without going through unnecessary and time-consuming rounds of processing. Proper use of metadata, badging and rating of assets and visualisations ensures that everyone is clear on the usefulness and limitations of any given element. This is a good way to build organisation-wide confidence in data, which is a major step in achieving good Data Governance.

    The 18 Best Data Governance Tools And Software For 2022

    Solutions Reviews listing of the best data governance tools is an annual mashup of products that best represent current market conditions, according to the crowd. Our editors selected the best data governance tools and software based on each solutions Authority Score a meta-analysis of real user sentiment through the webs most trusted business software review sites and our own proprietary five-point inclusion criteria.

    The editors at Solutions Review have developed this resource to assist buyers in search of the data governance tools to fit the needs of their organization. Choosing the right vendor and solution can be a complicated process one that requires in-depth research and often comes down to more than just the solution and its technical capabilities. To make your search a little easier, weve profiled the best data governance tools and software providers all in one place. Weve also included platform and product line names and introductory software tutorials straight from the source so you can see each solution in action.

    Note: The best data governance tools are listed in alphabetical order.

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