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Technology / Data

Developing data harmony and a data-driven culture

Domo's David Johnson says modern data architectures and tools need to be complemented by a culture which facilitates collaboration and helps democratise data capabilities across an organisation.

Companies are stalling while trying to extract value from their data assets and turn modern back-end architectures into front-end business value.

That is according to Domo director of EMEA sales consulting, David Johnson, who joined a Tech Monitor roundtable event with business, data and tech professionals discussing Developing data harmony and a data-driven culture.

Companies are stalling while trying to extract value from their data assets and turn modern back-end architectures into front-end business value, says Domo’s David Johnson. (Photo by Sergey Nivens/Shutterstock)

Johnson outlined how modern data architectures and tools needed to be complemented by a culture which facilitated collaboration and helped democratise data capabilities across an organisation – nurturing the pockets of expertise rather than trying to directly control it.

“A recurring challenge is having a strong central data strategy to alleviate the need for ‘Shadow IT’, in the form of individuals taking matters into their own hands because they have inadequate access to data or capabilities,” Johnson said.

“I love the concept of the UDBCA – or ‘user-defined business-critical application’ – which have become a thorn of sorts,” he said of organisations and individuals becoming beholden to particular processes and apps.

“A lot of companies have started down or nearly completed the journey to have a centralised, pristine, enterprise data warehouse,” Johnson said, “and have made great investments to bolster this strategy and work the underpinnings.

“What’s less clear seems to be the next step of unlocking this data for end-users, and translating a slick back-end architecture to front-end business value driving decision making.”

Developing self-service tools, mandating APIs and a focus on integration were cited as ways which could help tackle this.

Johnson introduced Forrester analyst Boris Evelson’s concept of ‘Goldilocks Governance’ – finding the porridge that is just the correct temperature – as something to aim for in finding harmony between security and agility.

“Striking the balance between accurate, trusted information, and total ease-of-use and flexibility, helps to drive a lot of data curiosity and push towards a data-driven culture,” Johnson said.

“If metrics are easier to access, use, and ask questions of, naturally there is less friction when it comes to the decision-making process.”