Governed and Trusted Data

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Governance is the combination of controls, roles, and repeatable processes that create trust and confidence in data and analytics within your organization. In a traditional BI environment, governance is often seen as a way to restrict access or lock down data or content. Because it is commonly associated with traditional BI processes, there is a common misconception that governance runs counter to a self-service, modern analytics environment; however, governance takes on a different, yet equally important role in a modern analytics environment—where governance enables and empowers your people, rather than restricts them.

Simply put, governance makes self-service analytics possible. It provides the guidelines and structure needed to properly protect data and content, but also provides the permissions and access needed for a self-service environment to be successful. For this reason, a clearly defined governance framework is the anchor point of every data-driven company. The governance models you define will drive many decisions throughout the process—from providing the guidance necessary for the three workstreams to move forward, to developing the core capabilities to strengthen the data-driven decision-making in your organization.

For self-service analytics to scale, governance needs to be collaborative. Both IT and business stakeholders on the project team are responsible for defining data and content governance.  Shifting from an IT-led governance model does not mean IT relinquishes control so much as it means allowing the business to be more self-reliant within a trusted environment. Modern BI environments are implemented and scaled to benefit analysts and business users and as such, these users should all participate in maintaining its overall quality, including becoming a first line of defense in identifying data issues or irregularities within the agreed-upon governance models.

Acknowledging that every organization is different, and every use case is different, varying degrees of governance are required. The data and content governance models can be right-sized and applied to any kind of data regardless of where it falls in the governance spectrum. Establishing three primary governance models—centralized, delegated, and self-governing—provides the flexibility to satisfy the governance needs of most organizations. Like other Tableau platform management activities, an agile, iterative approach is needed to adapt to new business requirements as user adoption and engagement increase across your organization. For more information, see Tableau Governance Models.

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