Metadata management is an important component in a data management project and it requires more than just the data catalog solution, however connected it may be.
A data catalog tool will of course reduce the workload but won’t in and of itself guarantee the success of the project.
In this series of articles, discover the pitfalls and preconceived ideas that should be avoided when rolling out an enterprise-wide data catalog project. The traps described in this are articulated around 4 central themes that are crucial to the success of the initiative:
- Data culture within the organization
- Internal project sponsorship
- Project leadership
- Technical integration of the Data Catalog
Metadata management projects will inevitably lead to multiple changes, which will impact the organization and/or the responsibilities of the collaborators. Managerial changes will then be necessary and cannot be made without the initiative being carried to upper echelons.
A data catalog project cannot succeed without the internal support of management
In a metadata management initiative, some collaborators will inherit new responsibilities and new directives on top of their current responsibilities. The initiative is often steered by a dedicated, transverse team that orchestrates the project and facilitates its execution. That said, the collaborators being asked to contribute to the project are often not actually managed by that team and work in another service.
Without a managerial go-between within the different teams and a common discourse, the initiative remains somewhat fragile. At the very first obstacle, the initiative can even be scuppered because the necessary steps were never officially made.
The best approach will depend mostly on the internal organization of your company. It is strongly advisable however to write the objectives down in order to make them official, nudge the work of the contributors of the initiative in the right direction, and steer the results.
A data catalog project requires an initial investment above all
It is common to carry out a census of all the information at the start of a metadata management project before feeding the data catalog. This information usually comes from existing documentation, but can also come from colleagues who have their own insights into a specific element.
The first step is to centralize and secure this metadata by inputting it into the data catalog.
The catalog has to provide a simple way to centralize all this information and share it with everybody. As a connected data catalog, Zeenea provides various mechanisms to do this. It can automatically bring up metadata from master systems and liberate the contributors from having to work on the information again.
Moreover, the connectivity serves another purpose: making sure the catalog is kept up to date and aligned with the master systems. This applies to the metadata that’s automatically synchronized but also to the metadata coming from contributions from collaborators: by its nature, an information system is alive. Data evolves, as does the associated documentation. Upkeep of the documentation is therefore critical in order to ensure its freshness.
The 10 Traps to Avoid for a Successful Data Catalog Project
To learn more about the traps to avoid when starting a data cataloging initiative, download our free eBook!