What is Enterprise Data Management? | Enterprise Data Governance

Organizations today struggle to adopt, integrate, and manage the enterprise data that moves through their systems. Data may be the currency that drives business, but without a holistic enterprise data management strategy, businesses are unable to harness its full value.

Business leaders can gain a key competitive advantage from their data ecosystems, but research suggests that most leaders realize they don’t have their data ducks in a row. According to Experian’s 2018 Global Data Benchmark Report, US organizations believe 33% of their customer and prospect data is inaccurate in some way. A UK article reports that nearly 85% of businesses say they’re operating databases with between 10–40% bad records. Poor data quality affects everything from analytics and business intelligence (wrong conclusions drawn) to employee productivity (lost time due to rework and poor communication).

Enterprise data management (EDM) refers to a set of processes, practices, and activities focused on data accuracy, quality, security, availability, and good governance.

Enterprise data takes many forms

Enterprise data is the totality of the digital information flowing through an organization. This includes structured data, such as records in spreadsheets and relational databases, and unstructured data, such as images and video content. Some examples include:

  • Operational data, such as customer orders and transaction records, billing and accounting systems, or internal labor statistics
  • Network alerts and logs used in managing IT infrastructure, by cybersecurity teams, or by application developers
  • Strategic data from customer relationship management (CRM) systems, sales reporting, trend and opportunity analyses, or external sources of market data
  • Application-specific data, including GPS data for logistics or transportation companies, sensor data for IoT businesses, weather data for news organizations, or web content for social media applications.

The pillars of enterprise data management

High-level, interrelated components of EDM present challenges and opportunities, but their true value lies in encouraging data awareness, a holistic perspective, and a focus on data’s meaning and utility over mere volume and velocity. Let’s look at some of the processes, practices, and activities that comprise EDM.