Data Governance Best Practices

Data governance has become essential to enable and protect data in today’s data-driven organizations. As three Vs of data – volume, variety, and velocity – continue to grow, data governance has become complex. Here are some of the factors that can help you launch and run a successful data governance program.

Privacy, Security, and Compliance

The three most essential pillars of data governance are privacy, security, and compliance. You must implement measures that facilitate appropriate control of internal access while ensuring security from outside threats.

Any governance is crucial to maintain compliance with all applicable laws and regulations that oversee collecting, using, and storing personal data. This is all the more important in the present landscape of data privacy, especially considering the consequences of data breaches and the advent of GDPR.

Data Architecture

Establishing the rules, standards, and models that govern and define the type of collected data. It also encompasses how the data is used, stored, and integrated into your organization and its databases. 

Establishing the correct data architecture is a crucial data governance best practice. Properly optimizing your data architecture can result in many operational advantages when it comes to data governance.

Data Quality

In data governance, it is good to never let the focus stray from the goal—ensuring consistently high data quality. The quality of data indicates its usefulness and appropriateness in particular contexts, observed in terms of accessibility, timeliness, and relevance, among other parameters.

To maintain high data quality, you need to implement a process of scrubbing or cleaning the data, preferably during ingestion. This helps remove incorrect, incomplete, and duplicate data. This is followed by data profiling—a process that removes inaccurate or irrelevant data about your specific use case.

Master Data Management (MDM)

To implement sound data governance, you need a concrete plan for creating data organization and data strategies. All these organizational and strategic elements combine to constitute the MDM or Master Data Management plan. This plan covers all relevant policies, standards, tools, and processes that your organization needs to process and manage data with effectiveness and control.

Data Stewardship

Data governance, like many other important aspects of an organization, can benefit greatly from having the right people in the right roles. You need to create roles in your structure that have specific duties and responsibilities in establishing and maintaining data governance. These roles would require different skills and come with different levels of accountability. It is crucial to clearly establish, from the very start, the responsibilities and expectations associated with each role.


Make sure that you carry out a skills audit and provide every involved person the requisite training. Many data governance programs produce disappointing outcomes because the organization never understood the importance and the rationale behind the controls and processes. Training could help bring the culture of data governance inside an organization.

In Conclusion

Ensuring the proper accuracy, reliability, availability, security, and legality of your data can form the foundation of a comprehensive data governance program. By implementing these data governance best practices, you could achieve a data governance model that works particularly well for your organization.