Analysts at Forrester Research today released a guide and set of checklists for organizations looking to build BI and data management strategies. The document, "How to Build an Effective BI and Data Management Program Framework," was authored by lead analysts Rob Karel and Boris Evelson along with business process analyst Connie Moore and Allison Caine.

The guide and checklists arise from an approach called process data management, which is Forrester's link between disciplines of business process management and data management, including master data management.

"We're not trying to add confusion to the marketplace," says Forrester's Rob Karel. "So when we talk about process data management, we're talking about an approach and a way to frame your thinking, not a tool or a technology market."

The focus of process data management is change management, role and responsibilities and governance that move data into the context of improvements and transformations the business is making and the processes that are being changed as a result.

It's the contextual view of data that clarifies the mission being pursued and sets the table for governance relevant to the task at hand, Karel explains. "I use the example of my days at Intuit when we were defining our customer. At that business, they are going after consumers and small businesses and professional accountants, so creating one definition of customer is faulty thinking. What this approach implies is it's okay if there are three or six definitions of customer but everyone should know there are three or six definitions of customer and how and where they are used."

Karel refers to data and process to two sides of the same coin. As a contextual rather than data centric approach, process data management is telling the business to develop change management and use common sense and evolve the business culture with a focus on skills and role development.

The lists let users determine readiness and check off whether they have the research and documentation for program basics, strategy, scope, buy-in, change management, design, implementation and tuning of the program.

The report includes recommendations to reduce risk that include business buy-in, iterative (not linear) data management and BI development, agile process data management programs and measurement of effectiveness. It is available for purchase here.

For a blog from Evelson and Karel on agile BI solution centers, click here.