Tuesday, July 5, 2022

TDWI – Enterprise Data Governance White Paper

In a recent white paper in their TDWI Solution Landscape series, Enterprise Data Governance, author James Kobielus lays out the data governance difficulties faced by organizations re-imagining their IT infrastructure in the Cloud. He writes:

Under any data governance program, IT-centric processes (such as data ingestion, profiling, and cleansing) must align with business-level processes (including data tagging, stewardship, and curation). Any introduction of a new data source—such as an internal data marketplace—must be accompanied by implementation of robust governance, curation, security, and other data protection controls around the assets acquired and ingested through these channels.

We see the due diligence exercised by our customers in purchasing our products. We have completed their security questionnaires, which are lengthy and thorough.

From a vendor’s point of view, the customer security and governance questionnaires we answer seem to be blunt instruments, because the majority of questions asked do not seem relevant to our products. However, for the customer, it is important to ask each question, because it is only through asking and checking off each box in their due diligence checklist that they can establish confidence in the product.

In the purely on-premise past, IT infrastructure sourcing was much simpler, with much less risk. The vendors and their hardware and software were generally known quantities. One common expression in IT departments was “Nobody ever got fired for buying a [brand name] router.”

In the on-premise world, there were safe choices, because the nature of networking was well understood. In the cloud, networking is complex and constantly evolving with many interacting parts, and due diligence must be performed on each of those parts to understand fully the impact on the entirety of infrastructure.

Metrics for Success

Kobielus gives us the metrics by which to measure data governance success in cloud-based infrastructure:

  • Trustworthiness – data is correct, complete, consistent and compliant
  • Relevance – data is curated to be relevant to information analysts and consumers
  • Consummability – data can be used to produce desirable outcomes

To achieve such success, data governance initiatives must provide:

  • Data quality management (DQM)
  • Master data management (MDM)
  • Metadata management
  • Business glossary management
  • Data catalog management
  • Data lineage management

Let’s see how APOS solutions for cloud-based analytics platforms stack up against these metrics and functions.

APOS Solutions & Data Governance in the Cloud

APOS has three solutions with various purpose-driven editions:

APOS Live Data Gateway

APOS Live Data Gateway is a middleware platform which provides virtualized data connection and data transformation to enable live data connectivity and expanded data source options, with a primary focus on non-SAP data sources. It consists of three layers:

  • Data Virtualization layer – Provides a single point of connection to a wide range of data sources. It respects existing database security and integrates with established single sign-on protocols.
  • Data Preparation layer – Provides a semantic layer rendering business friendly naming conventions to simplify self-service data access for report builders and govern access to data
  • Semantic Data Consumption layer – Makes needed translations for secure consumption by applications and acts as a unified consumption layer serving data to analytics consumers

In other words, APOS Live Data Gateway delivers trustworthy, relevant and consumable data using data naming conventions from your business glossary.

APOS Publisher for Cloud

APOS Publisher for Cloud is a bursting, publishing and broadcasting solution for cloud-based analytics. It transmits personalized analytics to the right people, at the right time, and in the right format. “Right” in this context means that the information sent goes only to the people who are authorized to receive it, that they receive it when it is most useful to them, and that they receive it in a format that makes most sense for them.

  • Burst Using Dynamic Rules – Drive bursting definition rules using a data source for consistency and easy scaling
  • Burst Using Filters and Variables – Add filter and variable valuables dynamically to create multiple versions of the same story for a variety of recipients
  • Burst Using Multiple Formats – Send PDF, Excel with Data, PowerPoint, MS Word, JPEG, TIFF and GIF formats as needed by recipients
  • Burst to Multiple Destination Types – Send to Email, Network File Share, and FTP/FTPS
  • Burst conditionally – Monitor KPI thresholds to trigger bursting automatically and send email alert notifications

APOS Publisher for Cloud provides trustworthy, relevant and consumable data in a secure and timely manner.

APOS Insight for Cloud

APOS Insight for Cloud helps you ensure your cloud-based analytics deployments function as expected, now and over time. Maintain performance, compliance, and audit-readiness. Track and monitor the health of your system processes. Automate document testing for change management across your reports and applications to facilitate smoother upgrades and compliance. Understand the impact of data source and environment changes on your reports and applications.

  • Upgrade with Peace of Mind – Perform advance testing of pre-releases, and resolve any upgrade issues before users are even aware. Troubleshoot performance issues with validation and monitoring tools. Manage your upgrades with confidence in your SAC environment
  • Maintain Audit-Readiness – Ensure your governance and compliance processes are optimal with impact analysis, an audit track of data changes, and validation alerts of any change in report structure
  • Plan Long-Term Changes Confidently – Deep change analysis provides impact analysis for any data and structure changes, with ongoing historical comparisons
  • Optimize System Performance - Validate that performance is optimal, governance and compliance processes are working correctly, and reduce report proliferation with system performance analysis
  • Troubleshoot System Challenges – Tools to help when something goes wrong. Use historical audit tracking and validation tools to work with SAP support to fix any issues that arise
  • Automate Report Change Control – Impact analysis and validation tools automate and provide consistency for your change control process

APOS Insight for Cloud is a tool for maintaining trust in your data, helping to ensure data quality through audit-readiness and documented data lineage.


Kobielus closes with this recommendation:

Align your enterprise’s data governance and IT infrastructure sourcing strategies. Data governance is a set of processes that run on enterprise cloud, server, and other IT infrastructure. When evaluating commercial data governance solutions, assess the extent to which they integrate with enterprise investments in DataOps pipelines, data warehouse and data lake platforms, data fabric middleware, and data observability tools. When shortlisting data governance solution providers, consider whether your incumbent providers of these infrastructure components offer data quality management, a data catalog, and other necessary functional capabilities.

While APOS solutions for cloud-based analytics platforms are not specifically data governance solutions, they align with the data governance principles outlined by Kobielus and can be integral to the goal of establishing and maintaining a well regulated and performative data fabric.

Learn more about APOS Live Data Gateway

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