(EMEA) VIDEO | Losing Trust in Data Leads to Losing Stakeholders — Schneider Electric Group CDO

Una Shortt, Group Chief Data Officer at Schneider Electric, speaks with Dave McEachern, Managing Director at AHEAD, in a video interview about the importance of maturity assessment in data governance, assigning data domain ownerships, CDOs understanding regulations, bringing in quality data, assessing access, and accountability.

Shedding light on the importance of maturity assessment while doing data governance, Shortt states that maturity is a critical factor as it reduces risks. Being mature in certain key areas of data reduces risk exposure for a company.

Maturity, thus, is a critical foundation in governance as a whole, and not just in data. Pivoting to discuss the maturity of data strategies over the years, Shortt states that as industry experts, they need to give back to the industry.

Therefore, maturity assessment is not just done as an organizational thing but to help others drive the value. Accordingly, Schneider has built a maturity model that has a group chief data office and thirty-four business data officers across the company, says Shortt.

The company network comprises people from business or operations functions who govern data locally and Schneider assesses the maturity, she adds. The process entails examining key risk or growth areas that could impact the business and that is where the concerned functions work to mature.

Then, Shortt reflects on the criticality of four golden data rules:

  1. Data risk management

  2. Rule of authoritative sources

  3. Having a common definition of data

  4. Creating data products for reuse

She shares that the rules are monitored with multiple KPIs contributing to each rule. She further mentions having a suite of digital platforms and a host of strategic programs focused on understanding the level of maturity of data prior to the program launch.

When asked about assigning domain ownership, Shortt reveals that she learned what a data domain is and how different it is from a data office. She insists that data domains should not be defined by the organizational structure as they change. Therefore, it is fundamental to define data domains by grouping data elements.

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Highlighting the terminologies of grouping data elements and logical groupings, Shortt says that the expertise lies in defining and managing them. The challenge is to make it consumable to data owners across the business.

Through the grouping of data elements, the CDO office helps data owners recognize which data belongs to them, says Shortt. She maintains that explaining the risks of not owning the data convinces people to own the data.

With the accountability to bring the best class data in, Shortt identifies data domain owners who own the meaning of the data. In the stream of data, its owners need to know how their data relates to other data in the domain, she notes.

As a group Chief Data Officer, it is imperative to understand data regulation to help data owners with the risks, says Shortt. Emphasizing data quality, she says that losing trust in data leads to losing stakeholders.

Additionally, Shortt asserts that it is the data domain owner who sets the data quality standard, and it is crucial to be careful of what is being controlled. It is imperative to showcase agility and that there are data quality rules that apply to specific data sets.

Furthermore, Shortt affirms that the data domain owners are held accountable for whether or not those operationalizing the data are following standards. Therefore, it is pivotal for them to ensure that whoever has access to the data is supposed to have access. In certain scenarios, data creation is impacted because people who have access to the data are untrained and it increases complexities at the group level.

Thereafter, Shortt mentions having ninety subdomains, which simplifies the approach to domain management for domain owners. Further, Schneider helps them with a blueprint to understand the organizational structure.

Circling back to maturity assessments, Shortt concludes by mentioning the company playbook for data offices and data domains, which helps evaluate maturity and get the right support to build the organization.

CDO Magazine appreciates Una Shortt for sharing her invaluable insights with our global community.

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