financial services data governance case study

Financial Services Company Raises Data Management Maturity Through Process Development and Training

By Melanie Deardorff

With FSFP’s guidance, this financial services client developed and standardized practices for metadata management and lineage documentation, then set up successful and sustainable data stewardship and critical data element (CDE) operationalization capabilities to assist nine business units in increasing data management maturity, supporting content curation and improving Sarbanes-Oxley compliance.

About

Industry: Financial Services

Background: More than 1,000 employees provide retail and wholesale financing, retail leasing, protection plans and insurance products to dealers, affiliates and shared customers throughout the United States.

Engagement Type

Four weeks to develop guidance on implementing data governance and metadata management standards, followed by eight months establishing a repeatable and scalable process for data stewards to apply the guidance to refine critical data elements, focused on metadata management, data quality and technical lineage.

Opportunity Areas

  • Implement a strategy to hire and train full-time data stewards focused on each business unit
  • Continue ongoing modernization effort, requiring quick identification of business terms that map to CDEs
  • Implement master data management across domains, such as dealer, customer and product, including identifying key concepts across business units
  • Standardize data-quality documentation
  • Address multiple company affiliates, expanding to related industries, each bringing their terms and metadata for shared business concepts, business terms and metadata
  • Address the history of ingesting business terms into their data governance tool and a need to consolidate and differentiate among duplicate metadata for business concepts shared across business units

Engagement Snapshot

Four weeks to assess existing data governance standards and recommend guidance to implement the standards, including:

  • Criteria for Sarbanes-Oxley compliance
  • CDE definition standard and process
  • Data-quality rule definition
  • Data-classification standard
  • Data-lineage requirements
  • Measurement and thresholds
  • CDE playbook documenting guidance to increase data management maturity for CDEs

Eight months (in three waves, focused on different business units in each wave) to train data stewards to apply the guidance to CDEs in their business units, including:

  • Refinement of metadata review template to review and approve metadata changes and support the comparison of “current” and “proposed” metadata
  • Development of metadata review templates to compare current and proposed CDE names and definitions and to document relevant data-quality rules
  • Development of technical-lineage templates to identify the critical lineage path for CDEs and ensure data from strategic sources is linked to CDE glossary terms
  • Development of training courses and demos of key data steward responsibilities
  • Review of proposed metadata changes to refine data steward capabilities
  • Mentoring data stewards as they validate proposed changes with subject matter experts and validate lineage with technical teams
  • Documentation and continuous improvement of data steward guidance in the CDE playbook

Impact

  • Established a repeatable and scalable process for metadata refinement and data lineage documentation
  • Enabled and accelerated business-led metadata and data quality management best practices
  • Implemented standardized and scalable data stewardship processes
  • Provided training, demonstrations and guided application of key data steward responsibilities
  • Tracked progress metrics to document the completion of data management maturity improvements for CDEs in each business unit

Initially, our client said the processes FSFP was to develop and the training we’d provide would be key to their success. At the engagement’s end, they thanked us for helping their company get to the next level.

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