CBR attended Gartner’s recent summit around data management, here is some of what we learnt.
CBR attended Gartner’s, "Enterprise Information and Master Data Management Summit," where data use and data roles were the subject of choice. Don’t worry if you couldn’t attend because CBR has compiled a list of some of the most interesting takeaways.
1. CEO’s think they have a good data strategy – they don’t.
Debra Logan, VP and Gartner Fellow spoke about the difference of opinion between Gartner and CEO’s who state that they recognise data as a corporate asset.
While this may be the case, the reality is that many do not have a good data strategy in place.
Logan informed us that the majority of CEO’s state that they are spending large amounts on data, however much of it is duplicated, outdated, redundant and trivial data.
It is estimated that £13.2 million is being wasted each year due to problems caused by poor data quality and one of the causes of this can be attributed to a poor data strategy.
2. Unintended consequences of technology
Frank Buytendljk, research VP at Gartner highlighted the unintended consequences of technology developments.
One of the key points from Buytendlijk was that some of the new technology developments are made by: "Silicon Valley people, who have lived privelleged lives and are just not thinking about the consequences."
He raised the issue of un-intended and un-foreseen consequences of smart machines such as Siri and others. You can for example ask your system, "I want to rob a bank" and you would get a reponse that lists the nearest banks.
On a darker note, people could also state that they want to jump off a bridge and you would be given a list of bridges.
The problem can be that developers get too caught up in the potential positives of the technology and don’t consider the consequences.
3. Ethics is an issue for every organisation
"It is not a case that your company is evil, but because there are unintended consequences," said Frank Buytendljk.
Companies need to be aware of operating ethically and while a lot is spent on compliance, this does not always equal ethical results. With companies being under a microscope over what they do and how they act, it can be very important to operate ethically, just look at the backlash aimed at big companies that were avoiding tax.
Buytendljk, said that the view which a lot of companies take is that they don’t want to be in trouble: "That’s not a very mature way to approach ethics," commented Buytendljk.
Buytendljk raised the example of Uber and the ‘God-view’ app and the use of data to produce information on ‘rides of glory’. This is the name the company gave to journeys that were undertaken for the purposes of one-night stands. Clearly, when information like this is leaked – it has a damaging affect.
However, as Buytendljk points out, "pattern is being mistaken for reality," the data is not always right.
4. Information assets need a coherent leadership strategy
For Gartner, the execution of an information management strategy needs to be done at the CEO level and a Chief Data Officer is important. However, it was stressed that the decision to have one must be thought through.
Currently the CDO role is mostly being used in North America (65%), then EMEA (25%), and the banking sector is leading the way with 36% having a CDO. The reason for this is due to the heavily regulated nature of the banking sector, where tight control over your information is vital.
Debra Logan, said: "If data is such an asset, then it must report to the CEO."
Logan also noted that the healthcare industry is likely to experience an increase in use of CDO‘s as it becomes more vital to manage the data that they have.
5. Don’t just keep data because it might be handy one day.
For Gartner, it is clear that data needs to serve a purpose, by delivering a competitive edge through the analysis and use of information.
Organisations should not be afraid of the risk of damage caused by the loss or inappropriate use of that information.
It was noted that 50% of companies that are using data, are using it to enhance product and service offerings, while 10% are using information in order to boost product driven opportunities.
If the right controls are in place and the organisation is both aware of what data it has and how it can be used, then the organisation should apply the data.