infoTECH Feature

July 25, 2019

Data Lineage: An Important First Step for Data Governance

Pretty much everything available in today's world boils down to data. Data is readily available everywhere and to pretty much anyone who needs access to it. What makes this even more interesting is not just the volume but also the fact that there is data on everything you can possibly think of. As a matter of fact, unless something has been specifically redacted, information about it can be found if you know how and where to look.

However, just knowing that there's data available is usually not enough. It's also very important to know exactly how to take advantage of all the data at your fingertips with specific regards to its application. The best way to fully utilize available data is in the understanding of data lineage.

What is Data Lineage?

Data lineage is important because it offers specific information regarding data right from its origin through its journey to the specific point where it is. It shows information regarding all the processes involved along with everything in between from source to destination. It also generally includes specifics about integration, usage of the data and metadata collection.  Because of this, data lineage is a very important first step towards data governance.

What is Data Governance?

Data governance is a very important part of data management that ensures the availability and resourceful use of data and information. For proper data governance, there has to be suitable consistency, usability, availability and accountability to ensure that all data used by an entity is a product of carefully established methods of scrutiny and vetting. Effective data governance seeks to help with cost-effectiveness, improved data value, general compliance, proper planning, efficient administration, optimization of information and proper risk minimization.

How Does Data Lineage Help Data Governance?

It’s almost completely impossible to make any real headway with data governance without data lineage because it helps in more than just a few ways.

Identify Partial Data Set

Proper data lineage helps to quickly detect incomplete data so that they can be completed before application. If incomplete data is used, whatever conclusions or end results you reach will inevitably be incorrect.

Information Filtering

Data lineage helps you filter information so it becomes easier to sieve out unwanted parts and keep only what’s important. The amount of data available is constantly growing and without proper lineage, you would find that seeking out useful and related information is a problem as it will take too much time.

Pre-empt Impending Problems

Data lineage can also help with predictions, ultimately forecasting problems before they occur. With proper representation of data, it is possible to notice patterns and interpret them in a way that you know whether or not there's a need to be bothered about the occurrence of something unwanted. It’s great to be able to solve the problem but it's even better if you can prevent them from happening in the first place.

Even though data governance as a whole is made up of many parts, data lineage is perhaps the most important and should be the first step taken to achieve commendable results regarding data governance.


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