In several columns this year and last, I've discussed success criteria and pitfalls to avoid in implementing an enterprise data management (EDM) initiative. This month, I'd like to continue that theme but narrow the focus to one of the more critical components of EDM - data governance (DG). I'm going to discuss how effective DG "looks" when it is practiced.

You can install market-leading systems and data integration and analytics technologies, and you can overhaul your business processes to derive your defined future state of process excellence, but if you don't have a sound DG strategy and organization in place, all your work may be for naught. Why? Because how well you administer (i.e., govern) the data that passes through all that technology and those processes is, in my opinion, one of the key determinants of the effectiveness of most EDM projects.

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