The Disconnect between Technical Solutions and Business Value
Companies and governments are increasingly investing in technical solutions to deal with complexity and the pace of change, but many are frustrated by these investments not generating the amount of value once hoped. A principal reason for this is that overly technical solutions are often not designed to take data management further once they are up and running. It’s one thing to collect, store and analyse data. It’s another entirely to understand it through a business value lens and get the most out of it.
Even at its most contained, this disconnect between technical data and business objectives and processes results in frequent effort and knowledge drain. Repeatedly having to identify the context and business importance of individual data assets just to use them appropriately locks their value behind tangled processes and the minds of specialist users. More severely, a divided interpretation of data assets can lead to misunderstanding or contradictory use of information that impacts efficiency of services and the consistency and accuracy of reporting on key metrics.
Business Glossary — Bridging the gap between Technical and Business
A well-maintained business glossary can radically reduce the distance between technical aspects of data management and the production of business value. At its simplest, a business glossary is a data model that defines data in semantic (business) terms, allowing it to be easily understood by fully documenting its context and purpose. The size and sophistication of today’s data environments make the prospect of spending months manually labelling all the organisation’s metadata daunting. The Alex Solutions Intelligent Business Glossary is a core component of our leading Metadata Management Platform out-of-the-box. Powered by automation, Alex can import existing business glossary terms and immediately enable collaboration and enrichment through automated workflows. Rather than scan through your entire system and manually tag data assets, you can begin publishing approved definitions visible to the entire enterprise. The glossary is fully configurable to allow different teams and users to favourite and subscribe to assets they use regularly. This will improve consistency immediately, eliminating conflicting definitions and use of data within reports both internal and to the regulator. In Alex, different business processes and definitions can be directly linked to physical data assets, enhancing the traceability of analytical outputs such as reports and dashboards. Siloed knowledge from experts will be unpacked and democratised within the glossary, building understanding of data within the organisation. With a clear and consistent picture of data and technical assets within the business context, your focus will shift from trying to demystify information onto extracting its value.
Aligning Teams, Creating Value
One practical example of how Alex Intelligent Business Glossary can transform how different teams within your organisation work together around data is the interaction between sales and marketing. With a highly automated and complete business glossary of metadata, the marketing team will no longer have to rely solely on data from social media interactions or the like. As the single source of truth in the enterprise, the business glossary provides direct access to historical sales data from the data warehouse in easy to understand terms. Sales data encompassing everything from pricing, location, time period and customer profile will be readily available for the marketing team to review independently from having to request the assistance of sales engineers. If the marketing team wants a quick answer to the question of how many new customers were acquired through a past television advertisement campaign, they can find it in the glossary. Bridging the gap between these two teams even further, marketing could issue a workflow within Alex that automatically notifies sales of their desire to better align a particular campaign with rich sales data. On the other hand, sales can review their data in a consistent fashion, better enabling them to identify trends and potential sales opportunities. From this position, they can cross-collaborate with marketing to design a complimentary marketing campaign that corresponds to highly trustworthy sales trends emerging from reports generated via the business glossary.
The Alex Intelligent Business Glossary was designed to meet the needs of today’s interconnected business landscape. Inside the glossary, teams can easily understand each other’s work around technical data assets and trust definitions and context are correct. Instead of investigating meaning and use, teams across the enterprise can work together to rapidly identify and execute data-driven opportunities that unlock value previously unavailable to the business. Start finding hidden value in your data by contacting our team to arrange a demonstration of how Alex can merge the technical with business objectives in your organisation today.