A few good IDEAS


I am looking forward to attending IDEAS 2012 in October, not only because this will be the tenth anniversary of the conference, but it will also be the fourth consecutive year I have attended (for some strange reason, they keep inviting me back). In this blog post for IDEAS Week on the Data Roundtable, I take a look back at a few of the many good ideas that I have heard at IDEAS.

The Data Disconnect

One of the key points made by Tony Fisher in his IDEAS 2010 opening address was the need to decouple our data from our applications in order to evolve data management into providing data-as-a-service (DaaS) to the entire enterprise. This will enable organizations to close the gap, which Fisher referred to as the data disconnect between IT-driven infrastructure and business-driven processes.

DaaS can help organizations overcome the bane of successful enterprise data management: data silos. Many organizations persist on their reliance on vertical data silos, where each business unit acts as the custodian of its own private data. DaaS can horizontally span vertical business boundaries and allow the enterprise to truly manage data as a corporate asset.


In his IDEAS 2010 customer success story, John Zacharakis of Actelion Pharmaceuticals explained that DQ = DQ. In other words, data quality = decision quality.

Data-driven decision making exists at the intersection of data quality and decision quality, where quality data supports quality business decisions. Obviously, different decisions will have different data requirements. A better understanding of these requirements aligns data management and governance activities for better decision support, and establishes decision-specific data quality metrics, which deliver better data to the decisions that require it. It also provides a business justification for data quality improvements that will truly improve business performance.

101 Lightbulb Moments in Data Management

IDEAS 2011 was also the debut of the book 101 Lightbulb Moments in Data Management, which is a collection of tales from Data Roundtable contributors Jill Dyché, Dylan Jones, David Loshin, Joyce Norris-Montanari, Rich Murnane, Phil Simon (who also edited the book) and me.

The Year of the Datechnibus

For the IDEAS 2011 closing panel discussion, moderators Jill Dyché, David Loshin, Joyce Norris-Montanari, Rich Murnane, Phil Simon and I were asked to predict trends for 2012.

Just before taking the stage, I recorded this one-minute video describing my prediction that 2012 would be the Year of the Datechnibus — a data-aware, technology-savvy business person who would enable the cross-functional alignment and multi-directional translation of the data, technology and business aspects of enterprise initiatives such as data quality, master data management and data governance. It would allow organizations to focus on collaboration without labeling the collaborators by either their group’s business function or their individual job description.

At the IDEAS 2012 closing panel discussion, moderators Gavin Day, Rich Murnane, Joyce Norris-Montanari, Phil Simon and I will be predicting trends for 2013. I hope you join us October 8-10, 2012 in Las Vegas, Nevada at the Aria Resort and Casino.


About Author

Jim Harris

Blogger-in-Chief at Obsessive-Compulsive Data Quality (OCDQ)

Jim Harris is a recognized data quality thought leader with 25 years of enterprise data management industry experience. Jim is an independent consultant, speaker, and freelance writer. Jim is the Blogger-in-Chief at Obsessive-Compulsive Data Quality, an independent blog offering a vendor-neutral perspective on data quality and its related disciplines, including data governance, master data management, and business intelligence.

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