Why data lineage should be part of your business strategy

By Philip Dutton
on May 22, 2018

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A quick look at our website and you’ll see that ‘Data lineage is at the heart of Solidatus’. It’s what we do and we’re experts in it. However, it’s not uncommon for us to speak with businesses who know it’s important but openly admit they aren’t actively managing it, nor fully understand where to begin when it comes to incorporating into their daily processes.

What is data lineage?

Let’s start at the beginning. Data Lineage is commonly described as depicting the journey data takes as it flows through an organisation – It’s the ‘data lifecycle’. Lineage helps you follow a piece of data from start to finish, allowing you to see where it came from, what parts of your business it has touched and by whom, and identify if there have been any changes to the data and track back to the source to see why.

This is undeniably valuable insight!

Why is data lineage important?

In order to trust your data, you need to be able to understand it and this is exactly what data lineage helps you to do. Data has become a currency and in-depth knowledge of and how it is used is now crucial to all organisations.

For us, there are four main areas to focus on when it comes to data lineage:

connectionsRegulatory Compliance

With growing regulatory obligations, data governance and management are common buzzwords not just within Financial Services, but across many sectors.

Regulators now stress the importance of accurate compliance reporting and highlight how data lineage is necessary for promoting transparency. There has been a shift from merely producing reports for compliance, to now having to use lineage to demonstrate exactly how you got those results using data to prove its accuracy.

TransformTransformational Change

Data sources have the potential of having major implications for your business. When considering taking on a transformational change project, where multiple systems are involved across multiple departments, lineage can play a huge role in mitigating risk and understanding impact analysis.

With access to a data model for your change project, you can make tweaks to an attribute which in turn will highlight how that change can impact other data points up and downstream. Having this analysis can help you to reduce potentially costly mistakes and limit time being dedicated to fixing those avoidable issues.

GovernData Governance

Data governance is the management and control of data where you monitor usage, accuracy and integrity of data assets. To do this you need to have all the information surrounding your data and this is why lineage is important. It is the tool that will allow you to discover what is it you need to govern.

When you build a model of the data held within your business you are able to see a true reflection of the current state of your organisation. Lineage will give you visibility of what is happening in your business, so that you can prioritise what needs to be managed. It helps to ensure there is free-flowing information across the business allowing for greater communication from top to bottom and vice versa.

siloImprove Optimisation

Working collaboratively with teams across your business and within one platform, allows you to break down the walls often formed within organisations where departments tend to work in silos. By working with Solidatus, and using data lineage, you are able to have visibility of the full organisational systems and data flows, making it easy to identify redundancies and improve operational efficiencies.

Data Lineage with Solidatus
So, we’ve covered the fact that you want to be able to see your data and see it clearly, and the best way to do this is through lineage. Solidatus is an intuitive, simple to use web-based application which allows you to rapidly map your data flows and visualise them in a sophisticated and easily digestible manner. Our tool will enable you understand your data and make clear and trackable decisions moving forward. It will help ensure you are always two steps ahead when it comes to regulation, transformation, governance and optimisation. Check out more about our features and how we work here.

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Data is fundamental to your business, and understanding it is vital in order for you to gain value from it. When it comes to the regulator, you need to be seen as being proactive rather than reactive to regulatory requirements. Data lineage is part of the solution and once you’ve done it once, and done it right, it will set the foundations for future-proofing your data landscape. To learn more about Solidatus’ visualised data lineage solution, speak to us today:

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Topics: Regulatory Compliance, Data Lineage, Transformation, Optimisation, Data Governance, What is data lineage, Why is data lineage important

Author: Philip Dutton

Senior System Architect & Project Manager with over 17 years’ experience in the Financial Services focusing on global transformational change projects. He is passionate about transforming complex systems landscapes.
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