Friday, February 26, 2021

Data Management-Agile Methodology

 Data today is spread everywhere in organization, the rate at which data is incoming into an organization is increasing at a very rapid rate, with various touch points to collect data. Technology is also evolving at a rapid pace, so it has/is becoming very important for organizations to streamline data ingestion and catalog them appropriately. With Data strategy being closely tied with Business strategy, it has become very critical to deliver Business value effectively and quickly. In the past years there was a traditional approach being followed for data management. In this approach there were long lead times and the end product delivered was either late or did not meet the requirements. Fast Forward we are now in the age of agile delivery, devops, Continuous deployment and Integration. In the agile world the focus is to deliver incremental business value incrementally. How do we tackle data projects in the agile world, it is not cut and dry in the data world, there are lot of dependencies both on source systems, also there are provisioning systems that need data within SLA's. In order to address some of these challenges, there some key points that can be incorporated plus make use of tools that incorporate AI techniques.

1. Leadership should embrace Agile top down for Data Projects and there should be bottom up feedback on how agile is working for these projects.
2. Leaders/Business partners should provide framework, remove roadblocks, runways that would help an organization adopt Agile. There should be a mindset to tear down methods that wouldn't work in a modern enterprise, both business/technology should come closer together to deliver solutions.
3. Collaboration should be nurtured, allow the business and technology conversations to happen. There will be role specific responsibilities but that should not provide a roadblock to agile adoption.
4. Budgeting of activities/work need to change to adopt techniques like Activity Based Costing so that features/epics/deliverables can be funded accordingly.
5. Architecture needs to speed up adoption of latest generation Data Management Tools like Atlan,Arena and DQLabs in order to facilitate more efficient data ingestion, data profiling/quality and build effective lineage.
6. Availability of quality test data or have a framework to generate test data efficiently, this is real key to move along the work in the agile pipeline and have work ready for deployment. A key part of this is to have the ability to obfuscate the data especially when working with sensitive information.
7. One of the key aspects of modern data platforms is to have the metadata/catalog evolve alongside the data pipelines that are being built. In such scenarios the right set of data management tools can reduce technical debt. This is a very crucial aspect, identifying and handling this can limit the amount of work to fix data gap issues.
8. All of the above points need to come together so that you can evolve the data platform and data management in a agile way and match to the speed of the business. Business, Technology, Architecture, Stakeholders all have a role/responsibility to make Agile Data Management happen.

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